7:59 AM, 9°C MOSTLY SUNNY. Thu 30 Jul 2015(SYDNEY TIME)

Environment Policy and Strategy

Sydney Airport is Australia’s major gateway to the world and our nation’s premier airport. The airport connects Sydney – Australia’s only global city – and NSW – Australia’s most populous state – to other cities and regions across Australia. It provides access to all the benefits of the global aviation network.

Being only 8km from Sydney’s Central Business District, the airport is almost entirely surrounded by waterways, with Botany Bay to the south, Sydney Airport Wetlands (part of the Botany Wetland System) to the east, Alexandra Canal to the north and the Cooks River to the west.

Sydney Airport is also one of the world’s oldest continually operating airports. The natural environment at Sydney Airport has undergone a dramatic change since 1920 when the site was first declared an aerodrome. Approximately 25 per cent of the airport, including part of the two north-south parallel runways, is situated on reclaimed land and extensive modifications have occurred through historic airport development activities. This included re-directing the Cooks River, which originally flowed through the centre of the airport site. Despite this, Sydney Airport retains important environmental and heritage values.

Sydney Airport Environment

One of the ways Sydney Airport manages these environmental and heritage values – while continuing to operate Australia’s busiest airport  – is through the implementation of its Airport Environment Strategy.

Sydney Airport is Airport Carbon Accredited by Airports Council International (ACI) under its carbon standard for airports, as part of the airport’s ongoing commitment to environmental sustainability. In order to achieve certification at Level 1 (Mapping) of Airport Carbon Accreditation, Sydney Airport had to map the various sources of CO2 emissions on the airport site and then have its specific carbon footprint independently verified. It also had to provide details of its carbon management processes. 

Sydney Airport recognises its responsibility to manage the airport site in an environmentally sustainable manner for the benefit of people in Sydney, NSW and Australia. This responsibility extends to all our staff, airport tenants and other stakeholders.

Master Plan 2033

The Master Plan 2033 sets out the longer term priorities for the airport, with clear focus on the environment, sustainability and climate change.

The Master Plan’s Sustainability, Climate Change and Environmental Management chapter has a strong focus on environmental issues.

Environment Policy

Sydney Airport’s Environment Policy forms the basis for the environmental management of Sydney Airport. The policy establishes the principles for the environmentally sustainable use of the airport, from which objectives, targets and environmental action plans in the Environment Strategy 2013 – 2018 are developed.

The Sydney Airport Environment Policy – which has been endorsed by Sydney Airport’s Chief Executive Officer – can be downloaded by clicking on the link below.

 Sydney Airport Environment Policy (34kB)

Environment Strategy 2013 - 2018

Sydney Airport’s Environment Strategy 2013 - 2018 (the Strategy) was approved by the Australian Government on 17 February 2014. The Strategy was developed following an extensive community and stakeholder consultation process.

The Strategy details Sydney Airport’s environmental objectives and commitments for the next five years, builds on the environmental achievements made over the previous five years and promotes the continual improvement of environmental management at Sydney Airport.

The Strategy covers all ground-based environmental aspects associated with the operation of Sydney Airport including:

  • Sustainability and environmental management
  • Climate change and energy management
  • Water management
  • Air quality
  • Ground-based noise
  • Ground transport
  • Biodiversity and conservation management
  • Soil and land management
  • Spills response and hazardous materials

Please note that noise and emissions from aircraft in flight are issues which are addressed in the Master Plan 2033 and by relevant Australian Government legislation, rather than the Environment Strategy.

To download the individual chapters of the Environment Strategy, or a .zip file of the full document, click the links below.