National Academies Press: OpenBook

Airport Sustainability Practices (2008)

Chapter: CHAPTER EIGHT Social Practices

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Suggested Citation:"CHAPTER EIGHT Social Practices." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2008. Airport Sustainability Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/13674.
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Suggested Citation:"CHAPTER EIGHT Social Practices." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2008. Airport Sustainability Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/13674.
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Suggested Citation:"CHAPTER EIGHT Social Practices." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2008. Airport Sustainability Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/13674.
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Suggested Citation:"CHAPTER EIGHT Social Practices." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2008. Airport Sustainability Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/13674.
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Suggested Citation:"CHAPTER EIGHT Social Practices." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2008. Airport Sustainability Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/13674.
×
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Page 41
Suggested Citation:"CHAPTER EIGHT Social Practices." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2008. Airport Sustainability Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/13674.
×
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Suggested Citation:"CHAPTER EIGHT Social Practices." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2008. Airport Sustainability Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/13674.
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34 grams, performance monitoring and reporting, and incen- tives and awareness. On the management performance scale, 1 represents little or no awareness of the issue and no policies or programs in place; and 5 represents high aware- ness, accountability and long-term planning, and incentives aligned with performance. Figure 17 shows the results of the survey respondents’ self-assessment. Ratings 1 2 3 4 5 % R es p on d en ts U.S. Airports Non-Hub (1) 100% Small Hub (2) 50% 50% Medium Hub (4) 50% 25% Large Hub (9) 11% 22% 33% 33% Non-U.S. Airports Continental Europe (5) 20% 40% 20% Asia (1) 100% United Kingdom (1) 100% Canada (2) 100% FigURE 17 social sustainability self-assessment of respondents representing U.s. and non-U.s. airports. This section of the survey addressed sustainable practices designed to promote social progress and recognize the needs of all stakeholders. Social sustainability plays an important role in an airport’s relationship with its community and region. It aims to improve interactions with all stakeholders, including passengers, employees, airlines, and residents of neighboring areas. The category includes stakeholder rela- tionships, employee practices and procedures, transportation practices, indoor environmental quality, and the well-being of employees and passengers. Table 13 shows which U.S. and non-U.S. airport respon- dents identified planned or existing social practices at their airports. (For a detailed list of social sustainability practices reported by survey respondents, see Appendix D.) sociaL sUsTainaBiLiTY seLF-assessMenT Participants in the TRB survey were asked to provide an overall rating of the performance of sustainability at their airports with respect to the triple-bottom-line issues of environmental, economic, and social sustainability. Using the management performance scale (see Appendix B), respondents completed a self-assessment on how well they believed their airport was managing environmental, social, and economic sustainability with regard to policies and pro- CHAPTER EIGHT sociaL pracTices TABLE 13 SURVEY RESPONDENTS FROM U.S. AND NON-U.S. AIRPORTS WHO PROVIDED INFORMATION ON SOCIAL PRACTICES AT THEIR AIRPORT Social Practices Non-U.S. Airport Respondents U.S. Airport Respondents Large Hub Medium Hub Small Hub Non-Hub So1. Public Awareness and Education Q Q Q So2. Stakeholder Relationships Q Q So3. Employee Practices and Procedures Q Q Q So4. Sustainable Transportation Q Q Q So5. Alleviating Road Congestion Q Q Q So6. Accessibility Q Q So7. Local Identity Culture and Heritage Q Q So8. Indoor Environmental Quality Q Q So9. Employee Well-being Q Q S010. Passenger Well-being Q Q Q

35 The synthesis survey sought to identify airport practices that maintain and enhance relationships with stakeholder groups. Twelve example groups internal and external to the airport were listed to prompt survey respondents. Respon- dents cited the following practices at their airports. community/neighborhood Groups Community programs such as caring for the elderly • and organic farming. Area advisory committee includes a number of com-• munity members and meets each month. Bimonthly Noise Roundtable with community • members. airlines Strategic plan undertaken with main airline includes • an important chapter on sustainable development. Airline operating committee meets monthly with • airlines. Transport Bodies Member of and active participant in ACI.• Federal, state/regional, Local Government Regular communication with local government.• Tenants Launched Environmental Club to allow airport tenants to • voice environmental concerns and make suggestions. airport operator employees Projects can be initiated by the staff or the local • community. Local Businesses Regular meetings with groups of business partners.• Quarterly forums with local businesses.• passengers Customer service office searches for ways to improve ser-• vices and systems to meet customer needs and desires. Customer comment cards with prepaid postage avail-• able at convenient locations. Airport director reads all cards and responds weekly. the Vancouver airport authority has demonstrated its commitment to ongoing stakeholder engagement through annual public meetings and reports, airport tours, media interviews, and presentations. stakeholders are invited to participate in community forums to discuss issues that affect the region, especially noise pollution and environmental management. a comprehensive 20-year master plan is being developed with extensive input from community, industry, and government representatives (see Figure 18). U.s. airports Management of social sustainability practices at the two small hub airports was rated the same as environmental and economic practices (3 and 1). Fifty percent of medium airport respondents rated their airport’s social sustainability manage- ment at 1, compared with higher assessments for economic and environmental sustainability management. One medium airport respondent did not provide a self-assessment of social sustainability performance. Respondents from large airports rated their airports between 2 and 5, in a similar pattern to their ratings for economic and environmental performance. non-U.s. airports Respondents from non-U.S. airports generally rated manage- ment of social sustainability practices at their airports lower than they rated environmental and economic practices. Only three of five respondents from continental Europe rated their airports at 4 or 5 in this area, compared with four of five for environmental and economic practices. Twenty percent of these respondents rated their airport’s performance at 2, and one respondent did not provide any information. A UK respondent rated social sustainability practices at the airport at 3, the same as environmental practices. The Canadian airports both rated their social sustainability per- formance at 2, compared with 5 for environmental sustain- ability and 3 or 4 for economic sustainability. Respondents justified their ratings with comments such as the following: “Noise mitigation and residential purchase program is • rated at a 5 level” (large U.S. airport, self-assessment = 5). “We do a lot, but program and policy not formalized” • (non-U.S. airport, self-assessment = 2). sTakehoLder reLaTionships Maintaining good relationships with stakeholders can help airport operators better understand airport impacts, articu- late values and strategies, facilitate regulatory approval pro- cesses, participate in measurement and reporting, avert or resolve a crisis, and contribute to the local community (“The Importance of Stakeholder Engagement” 2007). Stakeholder engagement is not unidirectional and linear; rather, it is an interactive and iterative system that feeds into and enriches itself. It is an ongoing process, not an event (Amaeshi and Crane 2005). By considering the needs and interests of stakeholders, airport operators can manage, implement, and continually improve relationships; enhance reputation; and minimize conflict.

36 Airport respondents listed the following employee prac- tices at their airports: Endorsed equal opportunity agreement and seeks to • achieve the AFAQ AFNOR equality label (see box); introducing paternity leave and intercompany day nurseries; held a seminar on the theme of equal work opportunities as a factor in performance. Performance-related pay available only to nonunion • employees. Airport’s Equal Employment Opportunity, Diversity • and Training Office promotes employee recognition and development, and sponsors employee appreciation day. Employee awards recognize merit, safety, security, • length of service, valor, and undertaking exceptional tasks not included in the normal course of duty. First aid, cardiopulmonary resuscitation, and auto-• matic external defibrillator training are offered free to all employees—classes are offered on all shifts to accommodate the 24-hour workforce. Health and wellness policy incorporates nutrition, • exercise, and education to improve health and reduce sick time. Active safety committees have resulted in lower injury • rates. Airport expanded the use of online computer-based • training to provide flexibility and promote efficient use of employee time. All employees fall under the city’s employment guide-• lines, including the equal opportunity and diversity and retirement programs. Airport has an onsite child care facility and subsidizes • child care for employees. Airport offers performance-related pay and pay • benchmarking. Airport has a public employee retirement program with • fixed benefits. Airport has a telecommuting policy.• TransporTaTion Sustainable transport includes all forms of transport that reduce congestion and minimize emissions of carbon diox- ide and other pollutants. Kaszewski and Sheate (2004) found that stakeholders overwhelmingly supported a best practice scenario for sustainable airport development that included a “green transportation plan.” The UK Department for Trans- port defines this as reducing traffic congestion and emis- sions pollution, and developing effective partnerships among businesses, local authorities, and transport operators. Because this synthesis focuses on airports, the survey question for this topic refers to transportation that is under the influence of the airport operator (i.e., traveling to and FigURE 18 Example of enhancing stakeholder relationships by Vancouver international airport authority. E-mail system on the airport’s website receives • complaints; most are responded to the same day. Improvements implemented on the basis of customer comments include family/companion restrooms, wheel- chair assistance, free assistance in parking garages for cars with flats/dead batteries/no fuel, designated meeting points to eliminate greeter/traveler confusion, additional seating, dog relief areas for service animals and family pets, foreign language line at information desk, e-mail contact to the lost and found for overseas travelers, and baby changers in all restrooms, including men’s. other Annual corporate responsibility report based on stake-• holders, their demands and how the airport has built relationships with stakeholders through its sustainable development strategy. The airport is in constant contact with all • stakeholders. eMpLoYee pracTices and procedUres A high turnover rate can indicate employee uncertainty and dissatisfaction, or it may signal a fundamental change in the structure of the organization’s core operations. The quality of benefits is a key factor in retaining employees (“What Is the Global Reporting Initiative?” 2000–2006). the equality label (France) acknowledges equality and professional gender mix in a company and its management. Certification is handled by an internationally recognized organization—aFaQ aFnoR and is based on the company’s implemented gender equality policy. a commission composed of management, labor, and government representatives advises aFaQ aFnoR. the label is granted for three years at a time, with an inspection at 18 months to ensure that the company continues to satisfy the labeling criteria (“Equality Label Brochure” 2007).

37 Ground services provide an excellent opportunity for alternative fuel vehicles because of their limited range of use, high daily mileage, long idle times, and frequent stops (“Alternative Fuel…” 2001). Survey respondents cited the following practices in place at their airports related to alter- native fuel vehicles. clean and alternative Fuel Vehicles Clean vehicles—approximately 30% of the vehicles • are liquefied petroleum gas or electric. Sports facilities with lockers for staff; biking • opportunities. Airport participates actively in the public debate to • implement a new rail link between the city and the airport. Parking lot bus fleet is 100% CNG.• Thirty-three CNG buses with more than 10,000,000 • miles traveled. CNG stations on airport property.• Second largest airport-based alternative fuel vehicle • (AFV) program in the world—more than 600 AFVs. All shuttles have been converted to CNG or biodiesel.• alleviating road congestion Survey respondents cited the following practices at their air- ports to reduce road congestion: Global Compact best practice car sharing being devel-• oped to reduce employees’ use of cars; website allows communication about car sharing. Commuter rebate program provides financial incentive • to carpool/bus/bike to work. High-occupancy vehicle (HOV) and airport priority • lanes. Aggressive HOV goals being met through express bus • services and transit to terminals. Airport subsidizes “flyaway project,” in which passen-• gers park in remote locations, check in (including lug- gage), and ride an HOV to the airport. Last year more than a million people used the two flyaway locations. Airport offers “cell phone lots” to reduce terminal • circling. Active Transportation Management Association facili-• tates ride matching, van pooling incentives, and transit subsidies. Employees are charged for parking.• Airport is active in transportation planning to mini-• mize congestion. Survey respondents cited the following practices related to pedestrian and cycling facilities at their airports. from and within an airport); it does not include sustainable transportation practices by individual airlines. Airports require extensive transportation services, not just for pas- sengers but for employees, tenants, cargo, and associated services. Because of the high traffic, airports are multimodal and can play a major role in influencing regional transpor- tation practices, as well as creating their own alternatives to car travel. Examples of sustainable transportation might include walking or cycling, public transport, car pooling, and alternative or cleaner fueled vehicles. The survey asked respondents about the extent to which their airport was implementing public transportation and cleaner transportation practices. Respondents cited the fol- lowing sustainable transportation practices: public Transit Bus, rail, and ferry transportation.• New intra-airport passenger train.• Significant investment ($300 million) into public light • rapid transit line to airport. Built a train station and bus access.• Employee rideshare program has received EPA’s Gold • Medal for the past two years—28% of employees participate. Airport provides subsidized van pools.• Airport offers free public transit passes to employees.• sky harbor airport in Phoenix offers free transportation between the terminals in shuttle buses fueled by Cng. the airport recently opened a stage & go cell phone lot where drivers can wait in their vehicles, free of charge, while passengers deplane, pick up their luggage, and walk out to the curb. this eliminates the need to circle the terminals (see Figure 19). FigURE 19 sustainable transportation at sky harbor airport (Phoenix).

38 Airport provides family rooms where parents can care • for infants. Zurich airport was the first European airport to implement regulations related to physical and rehabilitation medicine (PRM), which is a recognized medical specialty in all European countries. americans with disabilities act A number of U.S. airport respondents cited practices to • comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA):• All facilities comply with the ADA Standards for • Accessible Design and continue to improve access. Airport conducted an ADA survey of all facilities • and is retrofitting locations where accessibility is limited. Airport developed an ADA program.• the aDa standards for accessible Design provide guidelines for accessibility to places of public accommodation and commercial facilities by persons with disabilities. these guidelines are to be applied during the design, construction, and alteration of such buildings and facilities to the extent required by regulations issued by federal agencies, including the Department of Justice, under the americans with Disabilities act of 1990 (“Code of Federal Regulation…” 1994, p. 492). LocaL idenTiTY, cULTUre, and heriTaGe Social sustainability principles emphasize social equity, meeting basic needs, personal development, and responsible citizenship. One measure of social sustainability is the abil- ity to express a sense of identity through heritage, art, and culture (“Guidelines for the Development…” 2001). Survey respondents from U.S. airports cited the follow- ing practices at their airports intended to enhance local identity, culture, and heritage: Preserved archeological finds during airport • construction. Maintain natural coastline of airport island.• Native American art exhibited throughout the • airport. Archaeological procedure for all construction ensures • that existing sites are protected. Built museum of commercial aviation at new interna-• tional terminal by replicating 1930s terminal—first airport to be accredited by the American Association of Museums. pedestrian/cycling Pedestrian walkways and automated people movers.• Running trail. • Pedestrian/cycle trails being constructed through the • airport land; however, foot and cycle access to termi- nals is discouraged. Zebra crossings and footpaths for access to taxis.• Bike access to facilities.• Cycle facilities started, but much more is required.• accessiBiLiTY A child, a person with a broken leg, a parent with a baby carriage, an elderly person—all are “disabled” in one way or another. As far as the built-up environment is concerned, it is important that it should be barrier-free and adapted to fill the needs of all people equally. The needs of disabled persons coincide with the needs of the majority, and all people are at ease with them. As such, planning for the majority implies planning for people with varying abilities and disabilities (“Accessibility for the Disabled” 2003–2004). The survey sought to identify airport practices that improve accessibil- ity for disabled or disadvantaged stakeholders. disabled persons Survey respondents cited the following practices at their air- ports to improve accessibility: Service that lifts a physically impaired person up to • the aircraft. Accessible toilets, extra-large toilet stalls; nursing • rooms and changing tables. Handicap accessibility is the law.• Barrier-free access for people with disabilities is a • significant design aspect of airport terminals. other accessibility issues Respondents also cited practices related to accessibility for disadvantaged/disabled employees and families: Employs 223 disabled persons (2.8% of workforce); • committed to increase to 6% to meet statutory requirements. In 2005, the airport organized two sessions on the role • of disabled people in the organization, highlighting that disability and efficiency are not mutually exclusive. Human Resources division has a Disability Mission to • provide information and advice in connection with the professional integration of disabled workers. Airport offers vehicles at very low cost to employees • based on the airport—providing transport to work for people who could not afford it otherwise.

39 indoor enVironMenTaL QUaLiTY Indoor environmental quality includes air quality, thermal comfort, lighting, and acoustics, and is closely linked to the health and productivity of building occupants. According to the EPA, indoor air is increasingly more polluted than out- door air, even in the largest and most industrialized cities (“The Inside Story…” 2007). The survey questioned respondents on the practices in place at their airports to address noise, thermal comfort, lighting, odor, ventilation, and vibration. Respondents from large hub airports and non-U.S. airports identified the following practices related to indoor environmental quality: High standard of equipment for staff.• Thermal comfort is taken into account early in the • building studies process with a double goal of energy efficiency and employee comfort. The airport is drafting a noise map to identify the areas • affected by noise. All airport systems meet national and international • standards for non-ionizing radiation and have been approved by the relevant authorities; the airport is developing and maintaining an inventory of all installations and systems that emit non-ionizing radiation. The airport maximizes the use of sunlight, uses • double glazing to reduce noise, and has a comput- erized program to control indoor temperature and ventilation. Low VOC paints are used.• The Health Safety Section provides training and sup-• plies materials, in-house and external expertise, and resources for employees. The preventive maintenance program to maintain • HVAC systems includes duct cleaning and high- efficiency air filters. The airport monitors recirculating air quality (HVAC) • programs. in switzerland, emission levels of non-ionizing radiation are regulated by the provisions of the 2000 ordinance on Protection against non-ionizing Radiation. non-ionizing radiation comes from the use of radar and wireless data transmission. (Unique 2006). eMpLoYee WeLL-BeinG Companies succeed by attracting and retaining the best employees. To do this, they must offer attractive pay and benefits packages, provide opportunities for training and Planted native plants and trees throughout the • facility. Art collection comprises more than 75 pieces • by artists of local, national, and international acclaim—in line with the city’s percent-for-art ordi- nance, which requires an art enrichment allocation equivalent to 2% of the construction cost of a new or renovated civic structure. Local art program requires that a percentage of all • construction projects go to public art—rotating local art exhibit in terminal locations. Historical property display in airport.• Public/local community art at various locations in • terminals. Airport works with state historical preservation office • when archeological sites are found. In-terminal museum/educational display about local • river history. Art on one concourse celebrates the local region by • incorporating a map of the river basin into the floor design. None of the respondents from non-U.S. airports provided information on practices in their airports to enhance local identity, culture, and heritage. the Phoenix airport Museum has a collection of more than 500 works of art, as well as gallery spaces for exhibitions. Most art and museum displays are in terminals rather than concourses, so visitors can enjoy them without going through airport security. some displays are outdoors; all are free and most are accessible 24 hours a day. in 1986, the city of Phoenix passed an ordinance to allocate funding of up to 1% of the city’s capital improvement projects for public art. today, the Phoenix office of arts and Culture administers aviation percent-for-art projects in collaboration with the aviation Department’s Phoenix airport Museum. historic preservation assessments are also being undertaken for residential purchases near the airport (“Phoenix sky harbor…” 2007) (see Figure 20). FigURE 20 Practices for enhancing local culture, identity, and history at sky harbor airport (Phoenix).

40 passenGer WeLL-BeinG Employee satisfaction plays a crucial role in customer satis- faction, particularly with today’s increased dwell times and heightened passenger sensitivity (D’Andrea 2002–2003). Survey respondents identified the following practices to enhance passenger well-being at their airports: Internet access.• Golf course.• Banks, shops, post office.• Chapel.• Planters and open green space.• Park and nature trail near airport.• Full-service Bank of America branch.• More than 70 retail outlets.• Main post office.• Quiet rooms.• Airport hotel being planned.• Wi-fi Internet access.• Spa facility in the terminal.• Internet access in most terminals.• Meditation rooms.• Child play areas in terminal concourses.• Dog walking park.• Airport is planning a fitness club in the terminal in the • next five years. Two areas for massage.• the 2,000-square-foot Plaza shower and Relaxation Lounge at the hong Kong international airport includes eight shower rooms, two hair blow-dry rooms, and nine semi-private rooms for napping (“hong Kong international airport Passenger guide 2007). development, and ensure a safe workplace that is free from harassment. Companies that encourage equal opportunities will benefit from the innovation and creativity of a diverse workforce (Aviation and Climate Change… 2007). Survey respondents identified the following practices that enhance employee well-being at their airports: Sports facilities with lockers for staff; biking • opportunities. Airport houses an intercompany day nursery.• Off-airport child care facility for swing-shift • workers. All airport services can be used by employees.• Every staff member has Internet access.• Airport has a staff lounge with gym, television, and • multifunction rooms. Golf course.• Banks, shops, post office.• Chapel.• Police stations.• Planters and open green space.• Fire station has a gym.• Meditation rooms.• Airport is planning a fitness club in the terminal in • the next five years. Two areas for massage.• On-airport child care center and subsidized employee • child care. Airports can realize numerous benefits from employee satisfaction. By providing fair and equitable employee ben- efits related to pay, training, career development, and health and well-being, employers can ensure a happy and produc- tive workforce, which will result in a successful and efficient business.

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TRB’s Airport Cooperative Research Program (ACRP) Synthesis 10: Airport Sustainability Practices explores airport sustainability practices across environmental, economic, and social issues.

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