dnata, one of the world’s largest air services providers, has achieved a significant milestone in its sustainability journey. The ground handler ensured smooth and safe turnaround of a flydubai Next-Generation Boeing 737-800 aircraft using only zero-emission ramp ground support equipment (GSE) at Dubai International’s (DXB) Terminal 2.
His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of Emirates Group, flydubai and Dubai Airports, said: “Sustainability is a key focus across operations at the Emirates Group, flydubai and Dubai Airports. The UAE is a major global aviation hub, and in line with the country’s vision to ensure sustainable development while preserving the environment, we are committed to taking meaningful initiatives and continually challenge our processes to deliver the highest possible value for all of our stakeholders. The green turnaround, involving a collaborative effort from airline, ground handler and airport operator, highlights Dubai’s commitment and ability to make a difference by using resources in a sustainable manner.”
dnata constantly invests in equipment to improve operational efficiency and reduce its environmental footprint. During the green turnaround, dnata’s dedicated team transported baggage with electric baggage tractors to the aircraft and applied electric conveyor belts to offload and load baggage and cargo. The passengers of the airline’s Karachi and Faisalabad flights were disembarked and boarded through towable passenger stairs. After the boarding had been completed, the ground handler’s professionally trained staff pushed the aircraft back from the gate with an electric towbarless pushback tractor, positioning it ready for taxi and departure. Throughout the turn, the aircraft ground power was provided by Dubai International’s FEGP (Fixed Electrical Ground Power).
Choosing green or hybrid options is a prime consideration in the company’s Ground Support Equipment (GSE) fleet planning. Over the past years, dnata has replaced a large number of its ramp vehicles, GSE and forklifts with hybrid or electric alternatives, while refurbishing selected GSE where appropriate to extend life-cycles, decrease engine emissions, reduce waste and update them to the latest safety and quality standards. dnata now operates a total of over 100 eco-efficient vehicles at the two Dubai airports.
In alignment with Expo 2020 Dubai, which aspires to deliver one of the most sustainable World Expos ever, dnata is also currently reviewing the potential to convert its passenger handling operations at Dubai World Central (DWC) to an entirely electric ramp GSE operation in 2020.
Besides its continuous investment in its green GSE fleet, dnata has been running several initiatives to reduce its environmental footprint by minimising waste, cutting out single use plastic (SUP) and decreasing energy and water consumption in its facilities. Most recently, the company has launched a wide-reaching campaign across its operations in the UAE to eliminate the use of SUP water bottles. dnata’s staff were provided with reusable water bottles, and a network of water igloos was established across the airport. The igloos were regularly topped up with water and ice. Over the summer months, these steps avoided the generation of almost 1.2 million plastic water bottles compared to previous years. The success of these measures was such that Dubai Airports presented the team with an award in acknowledgement of the environmental and operational impact of the project.
dnata has been offering quality and reliable air services for over 60 years in the UAE. Every day, the company’s customer-oriented employees assist over 240,000 passengers, move 2,000 tonnes of cargo and prepare 13,000 inflight meals in the country.