Alongside airlines and airports, skeyes is taking practical steps to reduce the ecological footprint of aviation. A pioneer in the area of green landings, the company is also banking on the training of air traffic controllers on the frontline to reduce the impact of operations on the environment. As well as optimising procedures, the company is also at the forefront of renewable energy and assists with the siting of new wind turbines by ensuring that they are developed harmoniously with air traffic.
1. Green landings
Continuous Descent Operation (CDO)
A CDO (Continuous Descent Operation) is an operation in which the aircraft descends continuously, employing minimum engine thrust to the greatest possible extent, depending on the characteristics of the flight and the air traffic situation. This enables a reduction in noise pollution, fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions.72.1%
of landings followed the green landing procedure at Brussels, Liège and Charleroi airports in 2019
Breakdown of arrivals by airport where the CDO procedure is applied
The application of the CDO procedure depends on the complexity and density of air traffic.
Evolution 2018-2019 of CDO arrivals
Number of 2019 CDO arrivals compared to total number of arrivals
2. Environmental training for our air traffic controllers
air traffic controllers took the Climate and Environment training in 2019
To raise awareness of climate change among air traffic controllers, skeyes launched a Climate and Environment training for its operations personnel in 2018. Developed by an air traffic controller, the module of several hours covers climate issues and the impact of aviation. The course also provides an opportunity to exchange best practices by enabling them to contribute to a reduction in aviation-linked CO2 emissions while controlling air traffic in the airspace for which skeyes is responsible.
In 2019, 105 air traffic controllers from the Antwerp, Brussels, Charleroi, and Liège towers completed this new training course. In 2020, 100 additional air traffic controllers will be trained in this environmental component of their profession.
Initial feedback from air traffic controllers is very positive. The course gave them a better understanding of the industry’s efforts to reduce the environmental impact of aviation. Above all, they can better understand how they can help pilots reduce their fuel consumption..
“The Climate and Environment training was very inspiring!”
“What is most striking is the impressive efforts that have been made by the airlines, in collaboration with airports and air navigation service providers, to reduce their impact on the environment.”
“This course provides a clear vision of the company’s actions and the needs of pilots.”
3. Collaborative environmental management at Brussels Airport
In 2018, skeyes and Brussels Airport Company signed a collaboration agreement with Brussels Airlines, TUI fly and DHL Express for the carrying out of joint initiatives aimed at further reducing the environmental impact of aviation activities. EUROCONTROL and ACI Europe, a professional association of airport operators, support this Collaborative Environmental Management (CEM) initiative at Brussels Airport.
In 2019, this working group enabled concrete operational improvements to reduce CO2 emissions and noise around Brussels Airport.
Continuous descents or green landings on satellite approaches have been significantly improved by reducing energy-intensive staged landings.
In collaboration with the airlines , Brussels Airport has published a new section in the AIP to promote the use of a single engine during taxiing.
A new area for engine tests is also being studied with the aim of reducing noise pollution.
These meetings also facilitated the sharing and exchange of best practices in terms of reducing fuel consumption among the various players.
4. Contributing to the development of wind energy
skeyes collaborates with the wind energy sector and offers its expertise to developers to ensure that the turbines are installed without interfering with air traffic and, particularly, air safety.
wind turbines active in Belgium
new applications for permission to install wind turbines submitted to skeyes in 2019
applications have already been approved. The other applications are in the process of being examined or require additional information (65), were refused for safety reasons (26), or were withdrawn by the applicant (26)
BATC.be, a reliable and real-time source of information for local residents
skeyes and Brussels Airport Company have developed a new version of the information website BATC.be (Brussels Airport Traffic Control). Since the end of 2018, residents can use the website to view real-time relevant information relating to the use of runways, weather observations and forecasts, radar flight tracks, noise measurements and numerous statistics.
During 2019, skeyes and Brussels Airport Company (BAC) focused on the stability and reliability of the new version of the BATC.be website. Since a lot of real-time data is sent to the website, a monitoring system has been installed to detect any problems in the data flows and resolve them as quickly as possible.
By offering all of these new handy services, BATC.be is both a source of reliable information and an educational tool. The information website for residents has, moreover, become a model in Europe, providing the largest amount of real-time operational information to the general public.
New features will be available in 2020. skeyes is conscious of its corporate social responsibility and wants to provide as much information as possible to ensure a better understanding of its activities and mission.