Coming Soon: America’s First Solar-Powered Airport

by Allie Moore

Sep 20, 2019

Cochin International Airport. Photo: Pindiyath100 | Dreamstime.com

Feature

As harmful to the environment as air travel is, some airports are taking measures to become more environmentally conscious. One example is Chattanooga Metropolitan Airport in Chattanooga, Tennessee, where an adjacent solar farm powers certain airport operations.

Thanks to a grant from the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration, airport officials were able to install a 12-acre solar installation made of 10,000 panels. Construction of the solar farm, located just outside the airport grounds, began in 2011 and was completed in June.

As one of the more heavily polluted cities in the United States, Chattanooga’s achievement comes at a time when the city is trying to invoke more sustainable practices around the region.

Although Chattanooga is the first airport to implement such technology in the United States, the world’s first such airport is in India at Cochin International Airport. In fall 2018, Cochin (COK) became the first airport in the world powered by solar energy thanks to its apparatus of more than 46,000 solar panels.

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