International Airport, international footprint…

Aldergrove Airport has a carbon footprint the same size as Mali. If and when global warming does begin to bite, it will be Mali, rather than Belfast that begins to suffer first!


  • OK, fair do’s. Nothing much wrong with the basic story, I suppose. But there are no figures attached. I’ve had a quick search around, and so far haven’t found the actual numbers.

    Perhaps others have been more successful. If so, please contribute so we know what the issue is.

    To be honest, I’m getting a wee bit disillusioned by the constant beating-up of folk who take an occasional holiday in climates sunnier than Norn Iron. Especially since, on the other hand:

    Domestic cattle produce 80m tons of methane a year [].

    Some years back I had a pseudo-statistic which (usually) entertained the student masses, and was useful when the back-row found a loud one amusing: the human produces 2 litres of fart-gas a day; a cow can manage around 30; and an elephant about 80. Again, my dimly-recalled figures are open to correction.

    Akifumi Ogino, of the National Institute of Livestock and Grassland Science in Tsukuba, Japan, did a study published in New Scientist [19 July 2007], and showed that the production of 1kg of beef releases greenhouse gases with a warming potential equivalent to 36.4kg of carbon dioxide. [].

    And of all the Parliamentary Answers I’d have difficulty keeping a straight face while reading:

    Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what research he has commissioned into reducing methane emissions from cows.

    Mr. Woolas: For information relating to research into reducing methane emissions from livestock, I refer my hon. Friend to the answer given on 10 July 2007, Official Report, column 1380W.
    In addition to our work on reducing emissions from livestock through nutrition, husbandry, genetics, and nutrient management, we are also exploring the potential for the use of anaerobic digestion to reduce methane emissions. Anaerobic digestion can reduce greenhouse gas emissions by capturing methane from the decomposition of organic materials, such as livestock manures and slurries, sewage sludge and food wastes, to produce a biogas. The biogas can be used as a renewable energy source, both for heat and power, and as a transport fuel.

    So, what’s the fart-gas quotient for Mali, then?

  • Frank Sinistra

    Mali produces around 560K tonnes per year, a figure so negligible most sources just lump it in at the lower end of of the >0.1% range.

    This is just easy scaremongering. The problem with CO2 emissions won’t be helped by these utterly meaningless comparisons, it’s like saying my cigarettes contribute more to the problem than every single coal power station on Rockall.

    A pathetic comparison that doesn’t inform debate. Smoke and mirrors is as damaging as lies.

  • Rory

    My God! this is terrible. Poor old Mali – destined to become wet, dreary and miserable just like Aldegrove. Shouldn’t be allowed. Now that Al Gore has all that Nobel dosh couldn’t he do something about it?

  • Frank Sinistra @ 09:54 PM:

    Nice one! So I guess I was right: cows are at least 150 times more dangerous than Mali.

    But they have elephants in Mali!

    Oh, Lord! Can we load some of our guilt on the grey squirrels (Irish Times yesterday)?

    Note that the original piece had the opposite of the desired effect: none of us can take it seriously. There must be a job for its author waiting in Downing Street.

  • spiritof07

    i don’t know about Aldegrove’s carbon footprint, my only problem with is that is such a dump. It is dirty, the outside is a giant ashtray, the food stinks and is overpriced. I dread having to use Aldegrove.

  • Patrick

    So apart from that It is not a bad airport. Ever being to Gatwick.

  • Restoration

    Bring the Stewarts to the throne!

    It is the only answer.