1/31/2013 2:36 PM
We are quite proud of our bike facilities here at Portland International Airport, but who doesn't like a little validation? PDX was featured in a study completed through the University of California Transportation Center and the Safe Transportation Research & Education Center at the University of California, Berkeley that looked at obstacles and opportunities for airport operators to improve bike access. The report included case studies of seven airports, and recognized PDX as "exemplary" due to its bike and pedestrian master planning efforts, convenient access, facilities that support bike commuting and connections with transit, bike routes and multi-modal trails.
California bike blog, Cyclist Chic, offers a great overview of the study. See the Safe Transportation Research & Education Center's website for the full study and a poster with highlights from the study. The Port of Portland first developed a Bike and Pedestrian Master Plan in 2003 and an update to the plan will be completed this year.
12/26/2012 3:54 PM
If you flew into PDX this holiday season, it's possible you may have been on a flight starting to use new technology in their final approach to the runway. The Federal Aviation Administration published flight approach procedures for its Next Generation Air Transportation System, also known as NextGen, in September. The satellite-based aircraft navigation system is gradually replacing the nation's legacy ground-based equipment network and is designed to help pilots fly existing routes more precisely.
The new system brings multiple benefits. NextGen technology gives pilots the ability to fly an optimized profile descent, also known as a continuous descent approach. The approach enables the aircraft to maintain a continuous descent from the point of initial descent to the runway using a lower power setting and higher altitude for less noise and less fuel, thus reducing air emissions.
“From helping us minimize aircraft noise, to reducing aircraft carbon emissions, NextGen has numerous benefits for PDX and our community,” said Jason Schwartz, Port of Portland noise management manager. “We have many to thank for helping bring NextGen to PDX, including the FAA, the PDX Citizen Noise Advisory Committee, Alaska Air Group, Southwest Airlines and SkyWest Airlines.”
Procedures at PDX for using satellite-based technology for departures have been in place since 2008 and have proven successful in helping aircraft follow noise abatement routes. Most commercial aircraft using PDX are equipped with the advance avionics in the cockpit needed for NextGen navigation. Early estimates show that 10-20 percent of flights will use new NextGen arrivals procedures initially, and others will phase in over time. Next spring, the FAA plans to release arrival procedures, which will guide aircraft that are further out from the airport.
For more information about how innovation and technology are yielding environmental and community benefits in the aviation industry, check out FAA Administrator J. Randolph Babbitt's discussion on the topic.
12/4/2012 4:44 PM
Port of Portland employees working out of our headquarters building have been treated to an up close and personal viewing of a barn owl over the last couple of days. The owl first appeared roosting on the window ledge on the south side of the building on Friday morning and has been spotted at a few different locations around the building since then. Take a look at a few of the great photos our staff were able to snap of our visitor.
According to The Raptor Institute, barn owls are one of the most widespread species of birds in the world. Birds can naturally be attracted to the open spaces at Portland International Airport, where our headquarters building is located, and we use a proactive Wildlife Management Program, to help prevent conflicts between birds and aircraft that utilize the facility.
11/30/2012 1:46 PM
The Port of Portland was honored to receive an award at the fifth annual Airports Going Green Conference in November. The conference is sponsored by the American Association of Airport Executives and the City of Chicago Department of Aviation. The Port competed against a field of airports across the world to receive accolades for our LEED Platinum Headquarters Building. In addition, Port project engineering lead, Dan Gilkison participated in a panel of presentations discussing the link between building design and human health. Airports Going Green encourages the aviation industry to use innovation to lead by example and face the challenge of protecting our environment for future generations.
Airports Going Green
Port of Portland Headquarters
10/25/2012 2:45 PM
We are pleased to announce that Portland International Airport now offers electric vehicle charging stations in our short-term parking garage. The six Level 2 charging stations are located on the fourth floor of the garage near the south skybridge that connects to the airport terminal building. Two of the stations are allocated for valet customers, and valet staff will perform the charge at no extra cost.
“The charging stations help us reduce carbon emissions, while at the same time supporting the growing trend of electric vehicles and giving our customers a wide range of transportation options,” said Michael Huggins, PDX landside operations manager for the Port of Portland.
The Port already has two charging stations in place for its two electric vehicles, and continues to grow the number of alternatively fueled vehicles in the Port fleet. Currently, 24 percent of the fleet are power by electric, compressed natural gas, flex-fuel or hybrid systems.
An additional boost to the electric vehicle market occurred this week when AAA announced it will run a pilot program beginning in June to introduce mobile electric vehicle charging to its roadside assistance trucks. Portland was one of six cities selected to be part of the pilot project.
10/10/2012 9:04 AM
If you are planning to attend the fifth annual GoGreen Portland conference this Thursday at the Left Bank Annex, come check out Port of Portland Facilities Services Division Manager, Franko Martinec presenting about the Port's carbon footprint reduction and energy management strategy. Franko will be joined by Good Company's Aaron Toneys for a workshop entitled, Feet on the Ground or Head in the Clouds? Guidance from the Front Lines of Carbon and Energy Accounting. The session includes an overview of considerations for compiling a carbon footprint inventory and features the Port of Portland as a case study for analyzing opportunities to reduce carbon at an organizational level.
In 2009, Port of Portland Commissioners adopted a target for the Port to achieve a 15 percent reduction below 1990 carbon levels by 2020. To begin working towards this ambitious goal, the Port created a carbon footprint reduction and energy management master plan. The process culminated in the development of a software tool that allows the Port to identify opportunities for carbon reduction and build portfolios of actions necessary to meet the target. The Port is a founding member of The Climate Registry and has been reporting carbon emissions since 2008.
10/4/2012 8:49 AM
Environmental cues are a big part of encouraging behavior change. This is especially true when it comes to waste management. The flying public is an active participant in helping us effectively manage our waste streams at PDX. Most people have become accustomed to separating out recyclables and composting is becoming more commonplace, especially in Portland, but what about separating out liquids?
Imagine the last time you flew out of the airport – you were probably focusing on getting your documents in order, removing your shoes, taking your laptop out of your bag and then, “what am I going to do with this bottle of water I only drank half of?” In 2008, we introduced our first liquid collection stations at PDX to help remove liquids from our waste stream. The stations prevent liquid-filled containers from being sent to waste handlers, reduce costs in janitorial services and allow passengers to reuse their container post-security. Though the stations have diverted 100 tons of liquid from the landfill since their installation, we had a sense that they might be inconspicuous in this busy section of the airport.
With help from the Port of Portland Technical Assistance Project, we stood out at each security check-point for two hours and polled passengers coming through. Did they use the liquid collection station? Did they see it at all? What would make it more noticeable? What we discovered was that although the stations had collected 100 tons of liquid in the last four years, they actually had a fairly low rate of use and many people did not see them at all. Polled passengers recommended bigger stations, brighter colors and images that encourage people to stop and look. Earlier this summer, we rolled out redesigned stations, shown below. The redesign was based almost entirely on the public feedback we received. We are currently in the process of collecting six months of data to gauge the effectiveness of the new design.
Also, be sure to check out the station featured in Airport Magazine.
8/29/2012 3:29 PM
Are you curious about how Portland International Airport handles deicing operations in the winter? Have you driven by our new facility on NE 33rd Ave. and wondered what exactly happens there? As we head into the fall and winter months, we are opening our doors to the public and other interested parties to learn more about our new deicing treatment facility.
The Port of Portland designed the enhanced system in partnership with air carriers and regulatory agencies to better protect water quality in the Columbia Slough. The entire project is part of an agreement with the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality to ensure the Port meets environmental regulations for deicing operations while maintaining safe airport operations.
The enhanced system features on-site anaerobic treatment, one of only three facilities of its kind in the nation. Major construction of the facility was completed last fall and the Port went through a seven-month start-up testing process during winter and spring of 2011-12 to ensure the system operated as designed. That process was completed in April 2012 and the system is now fully operational.
For an inside look, join us for a guided facility tour on Tuesday, Sept. 18. Tours will occur every half hour between 5 and 7 p.m. at our facility on 10150 NE 33rd Dr. in Portland. Please RSVP if you plan to attend.
8/7/2012 4:21 PM
We are pleased to find that PDX was featured in this month's GreenPacks Magazine, an environmentally-friendly news magazine read throughout the country. According to GreenPacks, PDX reflects the green nature of Portland, which is considered one of the greenest cities in the world.
Portland International Airport Goes Green
Portland International Airport, Oregon welcomes you with all its vibrant greenness. The airport boasts of a well-kept, maintained and manicured vertical garden which breathes in fresh air into the place. Portland is one of the greenest cities in the world and the airport authorities are quite successful in reflecting the green nature of the place in setting up the airport.
Well, going green is not just confined to these hanging plants in the multi-level parking lot or in setting up the garden. The airport terminal’s roadway is covered by a solar panel-clad glass canopy.
It currently produces about 12,000 kilowatt-hours of energy per year. The airport also has set an example in the area of recycling as well. It runs a successful food waste diversion program that involves several tons of food waste as well as other usual airport wastes like napkins and food-soiled paper.
Portland International Airport has other achievements to add to its credit, apart from its environment consciousness. Conde Nast Traveler magazine named it the top domestic airport for three out of the last four years.
The airport offers free wireless Internet, a good number of shops selling local goods and even the TriMet light rail access to downtown Portland. So if you like shopping and roaming around in an international airport, this is place of must-visit.
Vertical garden nestled in PDX's multi-level parking structure
6/29/2012 12:50 PM
Air Transport World announced Sustainable Aviation Fuels Northwest among the winners of the magazine’s inaugural Eco-Aviation Awards. SAFN was recognized as Eco-Partnership of the Year for collaboration on the nation’s first regional stakeholder effort to explore the opportunities and challenges surrounding the production of sustainable aviation fuels.
The Port of Portland has been involved with SAFN since it launched in July 2010, along with partners Boeing, Alaska Airlines, Port of Seattle, Spokane International Airport and Washington State University. “We continue to use our position in the industry and the region to share the lessons learned from this project to encourage innovation around the production and use of sustainable aviation fuels in the Northwest,” said Phil Ralston, Port of Portland aviation environmental and safety manager. The project mapped a path to develop a safe, sustainable and economically viable aviation biofuels industry in the Northwest, with a broader aim of achieving carbon-neutral growth across the aviation industry beyond 2020.