Edmonton International Airport continues powering up its green future

June 15, 2021 | News Releases

Cogeneration plant will reduce carbon emissions 20 per cent

cogeneration infographic

Edmonton International Airport (EIA) is continuing its commitment to environmental sustainability by powering up a new natural gas cogeneration facility that will significantly lower carbon emissions and reduce costs.

This new facility began construction in 2019 and became operational in the spring of 2021. It provides electricity and heat for airport operations from the same source. The heat from electrical power generation is now captured and used to heat water, which heats the EIA terminal. The new cogeneration power plant will reduce Edmonton Airport’s annual carbon emissions by approximately 20 per cent or 7,000-8,000 tonnes of CO2 equivalent per year, roughly the same as taking 2,400 vehicles off the road. Once fully operational, the facility will also reduce EIA’s energy costs by roughly $800,000 per year.

The project, brought forward by EIA employees, is another tangible example of EIA’s commitment to environmental, social and governance concerns. The implementation of an energy and heat production facility onsite is a direct response to the desire for real, lasting and sustainable change in the aviation sector.

“We’re pleased to announce the installation of our cogeneration plant as it will offer critical reductions in CO2e for our EIA airport sustainability campus. We couldn’t have done it without our partners, the Government of Alberta and ATCO, and we’re thankful for their support. Our company is committed to being carbon-neutral by 2040 under our commitment to The Climate Pledge and this new cogeneration facility goes a long way to helping us get closer to that goal by reducing our current emissions by 20 per cent.”
– Tom Ruth, President and CEO, Edmonton International Airport

Other examples of how Edmonton Airports (EA) is working towards carbon-neutral growth include:

Located adjacent to the central utilities plant, the total estimated cost of the project was $11 million. ATCO was the Prime Contractor in the cogeneration project.

“We’re thrilled to partner with EIA and help them execute their vision for energy management and environmental stewardship. ATCO is eager to play a role in advancing energy efficiency and sustainability through innovative, cost-effective technologies such as CoGen. Using natural gas, an abundant, affordable and clean energy source, makes CoGen a win-win solution that offers facilities an opportunity to decrease their environmental footprint through decreased GHG emissions and lower operational costs.”
– Lance Radke, ATCO Vice President, Customer Experience and Initiatives

The Government of Alberta contributed $1.85 million towards the construction of this natural gas-powered facility. EIA is a ready to be a key part of Alberta’s economic recovery plan with projects such as this that create jobs and bring lasting community improvements.

“Alberta’s government continues to invest in bold and ambitious long-term projects, like this unique partnership between ATCO and the Edmonton International Airport, as part of Alberta’s Recovery Plan to invest in technology and innovation to protect the environment and get Albertans back to work when it matters most. This project has great potential to reduce emissions and create jobs and I look forward to seeing it thrive.”
– Jason Nixon, Minister of Environment and Parks

“This exciting project is a perfect example of how Alberta is leading the way on diversification and exciting new projects.  Albertans’ entrepreneurship and innovation makes us the best place to invest in new technologies and research. Edmonton International Airport and ATCO’s partnership shows that the sky is the limit for what we can accomplish together.”
– Doug Schweitzer, Minister of Jobs, Economy and Innovation

“I commend ATCO and Edmonton International Airport on their leadership and vision towards an energy-efficient future. Alberta is a perfect destination for private investment in low carbon and renewable electricity – a direct result of our decision to proceed with an energy-only market and our government’s commitment to reducing emissions through the very successful Technology Innovation and Emissions Reduction program.”
– Dale Nally, Associate Minister of Natural Gas and Electricity

To learn more about EIA Carbon and Energy Management visit flyeia.com/environment.

About Edmonton International Airport
Edmonton International Airport is a self-funded, not-for-profit corporation whose mandate is to drive economic prosperity for the Edmonton Metropolitan Region. Edmonton Airports managed Edmonton International Airport (EIA), and owns and operates Villeneuve Airport (VA). EIA is Canada’s fifth-busiest airport by passenger traffic and the largest major Canadian airport by land area. EIA offers non-stop connections to destinations across Canada, the U.S., Mexico, the Caribbean, and Europe. EIA is a major economic driver and has attracted over $1.3 billion in investment to our property over the last few years. EIA’s Airport City Sustainability Campus is a living lab for accelerating the development, testing, implementation, and commercialization of technology. EIA’s Airport City Sustainability Campus propels new jobs, tourism, and economic diversification – and creates a destination in and around EIA, featuring entertainment, e-commerce, retail, hospitality, cargo/logistics, bio-pharma, light manufacturing and many other industries.