Shannon Airport recognises its responsibility to minimise the impact of the airport’s operations on the local environment by means of a programme of continuous improvement.
The Safety Compliance & Environmental Department manages the environmental programme at Shannon Airport and its role is dedicated to effective management and improvement in many areas including:
- Waste Water treatment & monitoring
- Air Quality monitoring
- Surface Water quality monitoring
- Drinking water quality monitoring
- Noise management
- Effective waste management & recycling initiatives
- Energy consumption
- Airport landscape and ecology
- Community relations
Waste Water Treatment & Monitoring
The airport waste water treatment plant became fully operational in March 2007 and is designed for a population equivalent of 5,000. It encompasses primary, secondary and tertiary treatment elements in order to remove physical and chemical components from the waste water before the final treated effluent stream is released into the Shannon Estuary.
The plant is operated and maintained by Response Group on behalf of the airport authority and is charged with operating all elements of the plant including the environmental monitoring programme. Samples are taken monthly and tested for Ph, BOD, COD, Total Nitrogen, Ammonia, Total Phosphates and Suspended solids. Tests for Residual Chlorine, Sulphates and Oils/Fats and Greases are also carried out.
The discharging of treated wastewater to waters is licensed by Clare County Council and Shannon Airport holds a current discharge licence as required under the Local Government (Water Pollution) Act 1977 and 1990. The wastewater discharged must meet certain minimum standards as outlined in the conditions of the licence.
Air Quality Monitoring
The quality of air at the airport is monitored at 6 monthly intervals in three strategic locations over continuous 10-day periods. The monitoring programme collects a range of data for a number of prescribed parameters, which are then compiled in a detailed report for review by the Safety Compliance & Environmental Department.
Surface Water Quality Monitoring
This monitoring programme involves the monitoring of the quality of airport surface water at eleven designated locations around the airport facility including airside and landside.
Samples are collected on a monthly basis and are submitted to an accredited independent laboratory. Surface water is analysed for the following parameters:
- Biochemical Oxygen demand.
- Chemical Oxygen demand.
- Total Suspended solids.
- Total nitrogen.
- Dissolved Phosphorus.
- Total hydrocarbons.
Accredited laboratories test all water samples and results and reports are submitted to the Safety Compliance & Environmental Dept. for review.
Drinking Water Quality Monitoring
This monitoring programme includes the monitoring of the quality of the raw water supply to the airport treatment plant from Rosroe Lough and the quality of the potable drinking water to the airport from the airport treatment plant at Firgrove.
The quality of the raw water is analysed monthly while the drinking water supply to the airport is analysed every second month.
Both the raw water and treated water are analysed for a number of parameters including: pH, bacteria and chemicals. These parameters are then checked against national legislative standards i.e. EU (Drinking Water) Regs, 2014 (S.I. No. 122 of 2014).
Accredited laboratories test all water samples and results are submitted to the Safety Compliance & Environmental Dept. for review and comment.
Shannon Airport is committed to the minimisation of noise disturbance to the local community in the vicinity of the airport.
As the Airport Authority we must ensures that at all times, aircraft operators operate aircraft in a manner calculated to cause the least disturbance practicable in areas surrounding Shannon Airport.
Noise level monitoring on the apron/ramp area is undertaken periodically as part of this management strategy.
Effective Waste Management & Recycling Initiatives
Shannon Airport’s waste management policy involves effective management of a number of waste streams including airport generated general waste, recyclables and hazardous waste types.
Some of the more notable recycling initiatives include the recycling of office paper, inkjet/laser cartridges, batteries and waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE).
The running and operation of Shannon Airport requires a large energy input. Since the use of energy is an important environmental issue, we keep energy consumption as low as possible through the use of energy saving equipment and technology and through the education and training of staff working at the airport.
The airport, as a public body, is now required to achieve a target of 33% energy efficiency improvement by 2020.
Shannon Airport is required to report annual energy efficiency data to the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) and this is done via an online national energy monitoring and reporting system. This system provides an important record of how public bodies in Ireland perform on an annual basis in terms of energy performance compared to a baseline year (2009).
Shannon Airport is considered a public body with energy consumption in the range of 5-50GWh.
Airport Landscape & Ecology
We believe in providing as attractive an airport landscape as possible, which is also consistent with airport security and operational requirements. This commitment to landscape enhancement together with caring for the local ecology, will continue during all future development of the airport.
We continue to listen to local concerns and strive to be responsive to community concerns in relation to environmental issues.