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Smarter waste solutions

With more than 20,000 people visiting Christchurch Airport's terminal every day, waste is something our business will always have to deal with. We’re committed to working with all our stakeholders to reduce the amount of waste generated at the airport and enable as much recycling as possible.


Our approach to waste management is based on the principles of the waste hierarchy:  

  • Rethink 
  • Refuse (reject)  
  • Replace  
  • Reduce  
  • Reuse  
  • Recycle (including composting and recovery)  
  • Rubbish (landfill)  

Achievements in waste diversion 

Were proud to have a strong legacy of leadership in waste management and diversion 

Our well-established recycling programme is credited as having one of the highest diversion rates in Australasia, with monthly records of more than 55% waste diverted from landfill. That means we now recycle more than we throw away. 

Coffee cups were a huge part of our problem. To stop coffee cups from contaminating our recycling streams, we created special “coffee cup bins”. They’ve made a huge difference in the amount we can divert from landfill and in 2018 we won a silver award from ACI Asia-Pacific Green Airports for our efforts. Learn more about the initiative here.

PlastiPhalt® is another exciting initiative we’re proud to be trialing. Designed to be used like ashphalt, PlastiPhalt® contains plastic chips made from previously unrecyclable oil containers. In partnership with Fulton Hogan we’ve undertaken the first commercial trial, with 250 tonnes of PlastiPhalt® laid at the airport’s fire station. It’s the ultimate test with fire engines weighing up to 60 tonnes driving over itThe PlastiPhalt® surface is expected to last around 15 years and can then be recycled all over again. In 2018 we were a finalist in the ‘Going Circular’ category of the 2018 NZI Sustainable Business Network Awards for this innovative waste solution.