Carbon Reduction

London Heathrow Net Zero

The challenge

Heathrow are committed to operating a net zero-carbon airport infrastructure by 2030 and support the overall UK aviation industry allegiance to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050. As part of Heathrow’s ‘On the Ground’ Carbon and Sustainability Programme, Airport Vehicles, it was recognised that the conversion of fossil fuelled ground handling vehicles to electric vehicles would make a significant contribution to this objective.

AiQ’s objective was primarily to gather the Stakeholder requirements, develop a timeline through to 2030 and to subsequently undertake analytics, research and surveys to validate the Stakeholder electric vehicle transition challenge, charging requirements and to highlight the associated carbon saving.

The solution

Stakeholder engagement and buy-in was a cornerstone of our analysis. Our team engaged with Airport operational teams, Ground Handlers, Airlines and other suppliers to provide a roadmap to an electrified vehicle fleet. AiQ also undertook detailed surveys to update the location of existing EV charging infrastructure across the campus feeding into the short-term strategy plan.

Gathering and presenting all this information in a coherent manner from a range of diverse Stakeholders was extremely challenging. AiQ’s expert knowledge of the airport, cognisance within the Operations and unique analytics capability ensured an efficient, concise and timely delivery.

AiQ pulled together valuable information which included vehicle replacement strategy, the timelines for transition and the overall power requirements. These findings were validated and reported to Heathrow which substantiated both their existing provisions and the requirements for their future growth.

Roadmap: Vehicle replacement strategy, timelines for transition and the overall power requirements

The benefits

AiQ’s key achievement was to help define the magnitude and timeline of the ZEV transition plan for Heathrow thus ascertaining the nature of the challenge moving forward. Aligning the transition plan with Heathrow’s aspirations was challenging in terms of time and investment but AiQ’s findings helped Heathrow to identify quick wins keeping up the momentum of the ZEV airside programme. Our work also provided realistic infrastructure targets for Heathrow to work with and to clarify the long-term goals to 2030.

AiQ have also successfully defined the potential Carbon and Nitric Oxide savings by undertaking emissions assessments in comparison to the current fossil fuel fleet. Our contribution will be integral in defining and delivering on Heathrow’s 2.0 net zero objectives of at least 45% cut in carbon on the ground by 2030 compared to 2019 and reducing NOx airside by 18% also compared to 2019.

AiQ have defined the potential savings for all major and minor Stakeholders airside and given an insight into how Heathrow can successfully implement its ZEV strategy. We have identified the requirements, established the future power demand on the existing network and quantified the ROM savings in emissions. What was particularly unique about this project was that it involved such a wide stakeholder capture and demanded such a breadth of understanding and consideration of all their requirements and needs.

This project resulted in AiQ being named as proud winners of the SME Net Zero award at the Heathrow Supplier Awards in November 2023.

  • Potential CO₂ and NOx savings defined
  • Efficient resource utilisation
  • Future-proofing airport for sustainable growth
  • Effective stakeholder management
  • Increasing airport sustainability
  • Accurately formulating airside ZEV conversion requirements
  • Data collection and analysis providing effective EV planning
  • Defining roadmap to implementation of ZEV airside strategy