Airport Enters Landmark Renewable Agreement

A new landmark agreement has Mackay Airport firmly on the path to becoming carbon-neutral by next year, a status which would make it among the first in Australasia.

Mackay Airport, through operator the North Queensland Airports Group, recently entered a six-year partnership with state-owned CleanCo Queensland.

Commencing in January 2025, the agreement means 100 per cent of the airport’s electricity, and that of tenants, will be powered by renewable energy.

Mackay Airport Chief Executive Officer Richard Barker said investing in good environmental practice was the right thing to do.

“Mackay Airport is a key economic driver for the Mackay Isaac region and we see it as our responsibility to balance our core aviation business with the protection of our natural surroundings,” he said.

“Our region is home to Australia’s longest stretch of subtropical rainforest and many pristine national parks and beaches, as well as being the heart of the Central Queensland resource centres.”

“Mackay Airport is committed to achieving Net Zero emissions (for Scope 1 and 2) by 2025, a significant target which would make us among the first carbon-neutral airports in Australasia. Implementation of climate-positive practices will help to futureproof our operations for the benefit of our community and economy.”

The collaboration with CleanCo encompasses Cairns Airport, also owned by the the North Queensland Airports Group. The majority of the renewable energy will be supplied by the Kaban Green Energy Hub near Ravenshoe, on the Atherton Tablelands.

Minister for Energy, Renewables and Hydrogen Mick de Brenni said: “We know that tourists come from around the world to visit the pristine sites of the Far North, and with the tourism industry the biggest employer in the region, initiatives that take action on climate are critical.”

CleanCo Chief Executive Officer Tom Metcalfe said: “This collaboration is one of great importance to CleanCo and allows Queenslanders to make a direct connection between the renewables we are investing in, the journeys they travel and the airports they visit in beautiful North Queensland.”

“Thank you to North Queensland Airports for trusting CleanCo as a partner in the organisation’s sustainability journey. We are delighted to support Queensland’s valuable tourism industry through the supply of renewable energy generated right here in Queensland.”

Mackay Airport is implementing a progressive Environment Strategy to guide operations through to 2025. Other targets and measures within the plan include halving waste to landfill, halving potable water use and protection of biodiversity.