The Tucson Airport Authority (TAA) is actively involved in monitoring and reducing the impact the airport has on the surrounding community. Several programs are in place in accordance with guidelines set forth by the Environmental Protection Agency to ensure that the airport and its tenants are operating as “green” as possible.
Tucson Airport Sustainability Measures
TAA has been recognized numerous times over the years for its green management practices. For a complete listing of TAA’s sustainability measures click here.
Environmental Impact Statement (EIS)
The Tucson Airport Authority (TAA) has identified a series of recommended projects that, if implemented, would improve safety at TUS. Implementing the projects would improve safety by reducing the number of airfield incursions, or occurrences involving the incorrect presence of an aircraft, vehicle or person on the area designated for landing and take-off of aircraft. TAA submitted the Proposed Airfield Safety Enhancement Project to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for review and approval. FAA is now preparing an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the proposed project in compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). Click here to view the TUS EIS website.
Recognizing that noise is an unavoidable side effect of aviation, in 1991, the TAA initiated a FAR Part 150 Noise Compatibility Program Update for Tucson International Airport (TUS) that limits the impact of aircraft noise on the Tucson community. Since the program’s adoption, numerous policies, abatement, and mitigation strategies have been implemented successfully. In 2012, the TAA adopted an updated Part 150 Study for Tucson International Airport.
For more information on noise at TUS or to make a noise complaint click here.
In 1990, the TAA initiated an airport-wide recycling program for white and newspaper throughout the airport complex, and in 1992, Tucson airlines instituted a cardboard and aluminum collection program.
Over the years the airport recycling reprogram has expanded to include:
- shredding and composting landscape waste material and reusing them on airport property
- recycling lamps and ballasts, antifreeze, contaminated fuel, used tires, batteries and scrap material
- reuse of concrete and asphalt from horizontal construction projects on road surfaces
- re-seeding airport property disturbed by construction
- collection of banned liquids by TSA at security checkpoints and donating them to local charities; and installation of beverage disposal containers pre-security
- installation of collection containers for recyclables in the public areas of the terminal
Soil and Groundwater
The TAA is involved in an extensive remediation of soil and groundwater contaminated by industrial solvents used during WWII. Since 2007, TAA has been operating a groundwater treatment facility on the west side of TUS, which uses air stripping to remove Volatile Organic Compounds from shallow groundwater. The airport continues to monitor soil, water and air quality and is proactive in protecting these aspects of our environment.
For more information contact:
Eric M. Roudebush
Director of Environmental Services
Tucson is a Solar City. The TAA solar energy projects exemplify our philosophy of promoting environmental responsibility and long-term sustainability. The TAA solar project includes the installation of:
- Photovoltaic solar panel array north of the main TUS parking lot
- Solar canopies over the daily parking lot
- Solar energy powered roadway signs
The first phase of the solar canopy project was completed in 2014 and produces approximately 1 megawatt of power for the main terminal complex. The second phase of the solar canopy project is currently under construction. The new solar canopy project will:
- Produce renewable energy that will be used to offset the airport’s consumption of non-renewable energy
- Minimize environmental disturbance by collocating the proposed facility within an existing parking lot
- Directly benefit the flying public by reducing the airport’s consumption of fossil fuel based grid energy
- Benefit the flying public by providing easily accessible shaded parking