Attendees at the FTE Global 2021 conference reception in Las Vegas, witnessed the unveiling of a new initiative focused on an often overlooked part of the travel industry’s carbon footprint – baggage.
NACO (Netherlands Airport Consultants), a company of Royal HaskoningDHV, and BagsID Network, a Dutch-based software-company for computer-vision baggage identification, have partnered to form the Green Baggage Alliance – focused on raising awareness around, and reducing, the environmental impact of baggage throughout its journey.
The Unseen Cost of Baggage
From the 300,000 trees lost every year for paper tags used on luggage; to the 32,000 flights required to carry mishandled baggage, producing over 8 million kg of CO2 – inefficiencies and waste in the handling, and mishandling, of baggage is not just costly to customers, but the environment too.
By optimizing existing baggage handling operations and using emerging digital technologies and innovations, airports and airlines can reduce some of these impacts significantly, while also delivering a better passenger experience to customers; but to date the baggage sector has been largely unexplored and under-evaluated. Until now.
A Pioneering Initiative
The Green Baggage Alliance is a force for change, aimed at bringing airports, airlines and ground handlers together with educational institutions, aviation experts and other partners interested in improving the travel industry’s carbon footprint.
The membership-based consortium will invest in research into the impact of luggage on the travel industry, providing a platform for more visibility and fewer barriers for all industry stakeholders, with the hope of inspiring and incentivizing the industry to unite around reduced emissions and improved efficiency.
“We at BagsID Network have been investing in technology to fundamentally change the baggage journey because it is not sustainable. Biofuel, electrification, and carbon offsetting are often on the agenda – baggage is not,” explains Marlon van der Meer, CEO of BagsID. “That’s why we wanted to work with NACO on the Green Baggage Alliance, to bring attention and awareness to this important issue and partner with others who feel the same way. If we are going to travel around the world, we need to save it, too. It’s the right thing to do.”
The benefits of membership with the Green Baggage Alliance include exclusive educational resources like webinars and articles, networking opportunities, access to partner discounts and promotions, and more.
Speaking about NACO’s involvement, Esther Kromhout, NACO director, said: “NACO’s approach to sustainability extends to all areas of aviation and with baggage operations often being overlooked we see immense potential in smarter operations and innovations to reduce its environmental impact. Combining over 70 years of NACO’s comprehensive experience in aviation with BagsID’s technological insight results in a great partnership. We’re proud to be part of the Green Baggage Alliance and we look forward to collaborating with industry partners who share this vision. Let’s shape a more sustainable future of aviation together.”