The Metropolitan Nashville Airport Authority's (MNAA) sustainability mission is to sustain the heartbeat of the Mid-South by cherishing its resources and ensuring that Music City keeps flying high.
In 2010, Nashville International Airport (BNA) was selected by the FAA as one of 10 airports across the U.S. to participate in the Sustainable Master Plan Pilot Program. Planning to operate in a sustainable manner requires a long-term, integrated and comprehensive process which considers the airport’s impact on the natural world, the surrounding community and the regional economy.
In October 2012, MNAA leaders completed BNA’s first Sustainability Plan and will use this working document to expand MNAA’s sustainability efforts and deepen a culture of environmental stewardship over the long term. Read the highlights here: Nashville International Airport Sustainability Study Highlights (PDF).
In 2015, MNAA was awarded the Governor’s Environmental Stewardship Award in the Sustainable Performance category by the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation for our sustainability efforts.
What are we doing now?
1. Incorporating sustainable practices into construction. As part of MNAA’s sustainability efforts, 88 percent of the 8,209 tons of debris from the Zayre Building demolition was repurposed or recycled.
2. The three-story green screen at our Consolidated Rental Car Facility, which was planted during the fall of 2011, continues to grow and was in bloom in the spring of 2016.
3. As part of MNAA’s Wellness on Wings program, walking distance maps are being displayed throughout the terminal building to share with our employees, business partners and customers to promote health and fitness. Click here for the Walking Distance Map (PDF).
4. MNAA recently completed two phases of lighting improvements. Replacement of more than 12,500 fixtures and recycling of more than 14,000 bulbs and 16,000 ballasts. Energy consumption reduced by almost 6 million kWh – a savings of more than $600,000 annually.
5. In 2015, MNAA opend solar-powered electric vehicle charging stations at Nashville International Airport (BNA). The three charging stations—two regular and one-quick charger—are housed under a solar panel canopy array that uses the sun’s energy to power electric vehicles. Located on the top level of the Short Term Parking Garage, the new solar-powered charging stations allow travelers with electric vehicles to easily recharge their cars while parked at the airport. When vehicles are not charging, power produced by the solar panels feeds into the Short Term Parking Garage to support elements such as lighting and signage. MNAA was awarded an $181,000 Clean Tennessee Energy grant from the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation to help fund the project.
6. MNAA recently kicked off the first phase of our Improve Stormwater Collection and Treatment System project. This two-phase project will incorporate $7 million worth of improvements. The program will first divert clean stormwater away from the treatment system to Sims Branch, a nearby stream. New aeration, the addition of a clarifier and state-of-the-art monitoring and controls will improve the effectiveness and efficiency of our treatment systems.
7. In an innovative use of a former rock quarry, MNAA created the largest geothermal lake plate cooling system in North America. Located east of Donelson Pike and Nashville International Airport (BNA) Runway 2R/20L is the former 43-acre Hoover rock quarry, with an average depth of 150 feet, containing approximately 1.5 billion gallons of water. At a depth of 50 feet, the water is 50 degrees Fahrenheit year round.
The project takes advantage of that cool temperature by circulating water through geothermal heat exchangers submerged in the quarry to the airport terminal's central plant, providing cooling for the entire terminal. In addition to the geothermal system, allows for the use of the quarry water for landscape irrigation.
The project is expected to reduce electricity usage by 6,000 kilowatts of peak demand and result in annual savings of 1.3 million kilowatt-hours and 30 million gallons of potable water. The utility savings to MNAA are expected to be more than $430,000 per year.
The project recently accorded industry-wide recognition by a leading Airport trade association. MNAA received the 2016 Environmental Achievement Award in the Special/Innovative Projects Award category from the Airports Council International-North America (ACI-NA) for the geothermal lake plate project. The Environmental Achievement Awards are presented to airports that strive to protect and preserve the environment through their programs, initiatives, and projects.
More information on MNAA's sustainability efforts: A Focus on Sustainability (PDF)