A customer receives purchases in a biodegradable bag at Abu Dhabi International Airport’s Duty Free
Passengers travelling through Abu Dhabi International Airport today are participating in World Environment Day 2011 with every purchase they make. Abu Dhabi International’s Duty Free outlets are avoiding the use of plastic bags for one day to highlight the harmful impact of plastic bags on the environment and to encourage employees and customers to use sustainable carrier bags whenever possible. This is an initiative in support of the Abu Dhabi Environment Agency campaign to increase awareness about pollution in the desert caused by plastic bags.
The distribution of reusable, biodegradable shopping bags at Abu Dhabi International is one of several environmental initiatives that Abu Dhabi Airports Company (ADAC) has launched to engage and encourage dialogue about conserving the environment and adopting sustainable practices in everyday.
ADAC’s public campaign went further with a commemorative tree planting ceremony at ADAC’s Headquarters, where Jim Bennett, ADAC’s CEO, planted palm tree as a symbolic gesture of the company’s environmental commitment. This was part of a larger tree planting activity at ADAC.
Internal employee engagement activities took place in the run up to the event with employees encouraged to reflect on how they impact on the environment and how they can make a positive difference. Pledges made proactively by employees were displayed on a pledge tree, these included employee commitments to recycling, switching off lights and reducing the consumption of water, amongst others.
Jim Bennett, ADAC’s CEO, stated: “It is important to understand and manage our environmental impact. Here at ADAC, we have applied environmental and waste management policies with an objective to recycle 25% of waste in 2011, and have launched various green initiatives, including ‘Turn it off’ campaign at the airport, in collaboration with the Environment Agency of Abu Dhabi, which aims to reach out to 11 million passengers, raising awareness about the necessity of conserving the consumption of energy and water.”
ADAC is also launching an internal e-waste recycling campaign for one week to encourage employees to recycle their old personal IT equipment, such as old mobile phones, laptops and cameras, and to raise awareness about the consequences of irresponsible disposal of electronic waste.
World Environment Day is an annual event, endorsed by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), for all people around the world to promote environmental sustainability and practices aiming to combat Climate Change.