FAA grant awarded to DIA to reduce emissions, improve air quality

Denver International Airport

Denver International Airport

DENVER — The Federal Aviation Administration awarded a $442,500 grant to the Denver International Airport to reduce emissions and improve air quality at the airport.

United States Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx announced the federally funded environmental grant Tuesday, adding that the it was awarded through the FAA’s Voluntary Airport Low Emission (VALE) program.

The FAA said it designed the VALE program to “reduce all sources of airport ground emissions in areas of marginal air quality.”

According to a release from DIA, the FAA instated VALE in 2005 to help airport sponsors meet the air-quality guidelines of the Clean Air Act. The program provided Airport Improvement Program funds to enable airports to purchase low-emission ground vehicles, refueling and recharging stations and other airport-related air quality improvements.

Officials at DIA said they plan to use the grant money to purchase pre-conditioned handlers that enable planes to turn off their auxiliary power units while parked at the gate and are connected to a cleaner central heating and cooling system.

DIA already uses these handlers throughout the airport, but plans to add the ones purchased with the grant money to the five new gates currently under construction on the west end of Concourse C, officials added.

“DIA continues to be a leader in environmental sustainability, and this grant will help acquire equipment that will reduce power consumption, save our airline partners fuel and money, and help to reduce the airport’s carbon footprint,” DIA CEO Kim Day said. “I would like to thank Secretary Foxx for making our environment a priority and for allocating these funds, which help us maintain our longstanding legacy of environmental stewardship and operational excellence.”

Over the next 13 years, DIA said it expects the new equipment to prevent more than 92 tons of carbon monoxide emissions from entering the air.