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We take a closer look at a handful of headline grabbing corporate social responsibility initiatives taking place in the Asia-Pacific region and across the globe.
NEW CAMPUS TO PROVIDE SHELTER AND EDUCATION FOR 300 GIRLS
Bengaluru Kempegowda operator, Bangalore International Airport Limited (BIAL), and main shareholder Fairfax have joined forces with the Sparsha Trust on an initiative designed to provide accommodation and education to 300 girls whose families have been devastated by the COVID pandemic.
More accurately, BIAL’s corporate social responsibility arm, Kempegowda International Airport Foundation (KIAF), Fairfax Financial Holdings Limited and Sparsha Trust are to open a residential and learning facility for girls within a purpose built campus being built by the trust close to Kempegowda International Airport.
Sparsha Trust is a Bengaluru-based NGO that is working towards creating a safe space for vulnerable children by providing them with care, protection and education.
The new facility will be called Chinnara Dhama, which in English translates to ‘A sanctuary for young children’, and will be managed under KIAF’s flagship education programme (Namma Shikshana).
BIAL says that the initiative will provide food, safe and secure lodgings and education at one of its adopted schools as well as social and psychological support to girls aged between six and seventeen.
“Many children across the state have been deprived of their parents and their emotional and financial stability can be threatened if they do not receive timely support,” said BIAL’s managing director and CEO, Haru Marar.
“As a responsible corporate citizen, it is our primary responsibility to help the most vulnerable amongst us in their time of need. We hope this initiative can help reshape the lives of 300 girls so they grow up to become responsible citizens.”
The project is being monitored by an independent team of governing volunteers consisting of entrepreneurs, corporate executives, defence veterans and social luminaries.
SOCIAL AND ENVIRONMENTAL SUPPORT FOR LOCAL COMMUNITIES
Queen Alia International Airport operator, Airport International Group (AIG), has officially launched a new foundation to act as the executive arm of its corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities.
The Airport International Group Foundation (AIGF) will focus on three key areas –youth empowerment, underprivileged community development and the environment. It notes that the goals are in direct alignment with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), a universal call to action to end poverty and protect the planet, which are being addressed in co-operation with several public institutions and local NGOs.
“Since 2013, AIG has been committed to its role as a socially responsible and environmentally conscious Jordanian company that gives back to the community. As such, we are incredibly proud to be officially launching AIGF, which seeks to systemise and scale many of the company’s diverse philanthropic CSR efforts,” enthused Omar Masri, chair of the foundation’s board of directors.
The plan this year is to commence five vocational training programmes for 56 young women and men across various fields – namely tailoring, cooking, hybrid car maintenance, hairdressing and photography and videography.
AIGF will also offer football training for 60 children and hold a sustainable agriculture course for 20 beneficiaries who will be introduced to backyard fruit and vegetable gardening.
Additionally, AIGF will partner with the Arab Group for the Protection of Nature (APN) – an independent non-profit organisation concerned with the conservation of the environment and natural resources across the Arab World – to plant 1,000 fruit trees for numerous families in nearby areas.
QUEENSTOWN AIRPORT DEMONSTRATES ‘GREEN’ CREDENTIALS
Queenstown Airport in New Zealand is confident that achieving Toitū Carbonreduce certification shows that it is “making strides in its sustainability journey”.
The certification means that the gateway has accurately measured greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, put in place initiatives to reduce them, and is seeing real results.
The company measures Scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions in line with ISO Standard 14064-1 and the Greenhouse Gas Protocol (GHG Protocol). The company’s net GHG emissions in FY21 were 267.64 tCO2e lower than the net GHG emissions in FY19.
Queenstown Airport’s general manager for corporate and community affairs, Sara Irvine, said the airport was proud of the certification and the 31% reduction in GHG emissions since 2019 showed real progress towards reducing its environmental footprint and goal of net zero emissions by 2050 or earlier.
“Now that we have a few years of quality data, we can better understand what our largest emission sources are and prioritise our environmental efforts,” said Irvine.
“As a large organisation in the region, we know our impact is real, and we are committed to continually learning and improving in this space. Working with Toitū not only keeps us accountable but their team is helping us set science-based targets across the business to achieve our goals.”
The reduction in emissions so far reflects the progress made to lower electricity consumption and increase waste diversion, but it’s also important to note the reduction in passenger volumes has played a part.
Toitū Envirocare is a leader in carbon mapping that works with brands such as Kathmandu, Antarctica New Zealand, Silver Ferns Farms and Auckland Transport.
PRESERVING THE UAE’S HONEYBEES
Dubai Airports and OneHive have agreed to partner on a new initiative to promote the preservation and conservation of the UAE’s honeybee population.
Through its partnership with Dubai Airports, OneHive will create an educational facilty at Dubai International Airport (DXB) to raise awareness of the value of bees to the environment and food chain and showcase the benefits of beehive-based products to achieve healthier lifestyles.
The DXB installation will also showcase the OneHive Honeybee Garden and Discovery Center in Hatta, a hands-on education and experiential learning centre advocating for sustainable apiculture, dispelling negative attitudes about bees, and promoting pollinator-friendly conservation practices.
Dubai Airports’ executive vice president for commercial, Eugene Barry, said: “Our partnership with OneHive will introduce an engaging learning opportunity to millions of travellers at DXB, including insights into the vital role that bees play in diverse ecosystems, and promoting healthy, natural, locally-sourced products.
“There will also be an opportunity for direct action within Dubai, in which this partnership advances Dubai Airports environmental and social partnership goals, while contributing to the UAE’s Net Zero 2050 commitment.”
OneHive is the largest honey producer in the UAE and maintains more than 3,500 beehives in the country, which are used to produce certified all-natural and local honey and hive products using sustainable practices.
VANCOUVER OUTLINES ITS ROADMAP TO NET ZERO CARBON EMISSIONS
Vancouver International Airport (YVR) has unveiled its roadmap to net zero carbon emissions, which it claims balances innovative approaches with practical actions that will see the gateway’s operations become net zero by 2030.
Earlier this year, YVR was the first airport in Canada to commit to net zero emissions by 2030, accelerating its original climate commitment by 20 years from 2050.
“At YVR, we have a long history of innovation and sustainability and are proud to be at the forefront of creating a greener, more resilient future for aviation as well as our community and the economy that supports it,” said Marion Town, director of climate and environment for Vancouver Airport Authority.
“Our Roadmap to Net Zero Carbon is an extension of our Environmental Management Plan and will ensure we achieve our ambitious goals.”
YVR’s new Roadmap to Net Zero Carbon outlines four decarbonisation pathways that are necessary for the airport to reduce emissions from its direct operations.
Pathways include green fleets, energy conservation and electrification, replacing fossil fuels with renewable alternatives, and strategically purchasing carbon removals to close the gap.
“Our roadmap moves us forward in decarbonising our operations by using what we know is possible to implement today along with built in flexibility to evolve in the future,” said Town.