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CAA to ban fuel operated ground handling equipment

FILE PHOTO: Forklifts at Entebbe airport

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Civil Aviation Authority- CAA has directed all ground handling service providers at Entebbe International Airport to procure electric ground handling facilities as a way of reducing emissions from fuel operated equipment.

The move is in line with a directive from the International Civil Aviation Organization that airports across the world reduce carbon emissions.

This is in fulfillment of the global agreement on the reduction of carbon emissions and the Paris Agreement on Climate change.

Ayub Soma, the Director Airport and Aviation Security told URN in an interview on Wednesday afternoon that the introduction of electric equipment will contribute to a reduction of carbon emissions 2.5 times compared to diesel equipment.

“We need to achieve cleaner air and healthier environment. We are going to send a circular grounding all fuel equipment from accessing the tarmac,” Soma said.

He however, didn’t specify when they intend to enforce this.

The targeted equipment includes Fork lifts, tractors and vehicles used to handle baggage and cargo around an aircraft.

Currently, only Entebbe Handling Services Limited (ENHAS), which trades as the National Aviation Services (NAS) has electric powered ground handling equipment at Entebbe International airport.

Electric equipment also provides a cleaner and quieter working environment in the baggage sorting area.

The development comes three months after the CAA Managing Director; David Mpango Kakuba directed that all airport and aircraft staffs be trained in the reduction of carbon emissions.

Kakuba also indicated that the institution will in 2020 start enforcing a directive to ground all air crafts with excess carbon emissions.

The International Civil Aviation- ICAO that sets standards for subsidiary aviation authorities in all partner countries set carbon emissions at not more than 5700 kilo grams for every aircraft, a year.

Philippe Lacroix, the General Manager National Aviation Services one of the ground handling companies at the airport has welcomed the move.

He however says Civil Aviation Authority should give a timeline for the transition to enable all service providers prepare for the purchase of electronic equipment.

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