Wings Magazine

B.C. A.C. to Host Conference on Global Sustainability

Richmond, B.C., ? Oct. 17, 2007- In keeping with the theme of this year?s annual conference ? Aviation & Global Sustainability ? the British Columbia Aviation Council (BCAC) will hold its first-ever climate-friendly conference in Richmond next month.

October 17, 2007  By Carey Fredericks

Richmond B.C.,? Oct. 17, 2007 – In keeping with the theme of this year?s annual conference ? Aviation & Global Sustainability ? the British Columbia Aviation Council (BCAC) will hold its first-ever climate-friendly conference in Richmond next month.

Working with the Vancouver-based organization, Offsetters Climate Neutral Society, BCAC will ensure that a significant portion of the greenhouse gas emissions generated as a result of staging the conference from November 25-27 at the Best Western Richmond Hotel and Convention Centre are offset.

BCAC Chair, Ken McNicol, says holding a climate-friendly conference is a commitment to the conference theme and an example of the leadership position B.C.?s aviation sector hopes to take in addressing the challenges of social, economic and environmental sustainability in the years ahead.

?We will tackle these challenges head-on,? said Mr. McNicol. ?Sustainability is the most pressing issue facing the global aviation industry, so we are bringing together local and international experts to discuss what more we need to be doing to address it.?


Donovan Woollard, Director ? New Business Development at Offsetters, says his organization will work with the hotel to calculate the volume of emissions that the conference will generate. Those will then be offset by making an investment on BCAC?s behalf in renewable energy projects.

?There is a growing trend among conference organizers to offset emissions,? says Mr. Woollard. ?These range from the type of action BCAC is taking to offsetting the emissions generated by delegates travelling to and from the conference. BCAC must be commended for taking this step. It sets a fine example for other industries in the province.?

Mr. McNicol said the B.C. aviation sector is an integral part of the national and international aviation industry. ?Global trends and events impact us in B.C. as much as local issues, which is why we need to be informed and proactive in making changes that are good for our business, for society and for the environment.?

He said the growing debate over the aviation industry?s negative impact on climate change, and issues such as the current opposition to planned runway expansion at Heathrow Airport in the UK, is clear evidence that the industry needs to find acceptable solutions to the challenges it faces.

This year?s conference will focus on three themes in three panel sessions

The aviation industry is facing challenging times as it copes with emerging environmental problems, climate change concerns, rising fuel costs and shifting consumer values. Speakers will offer views on issues and trends facing the industry.

Integration of sustainable practices in the aviation industry can make good business and environmental sense. Speakers will share their stories and views on the roles others can play.

Given the impact of the air transport industry on global environments, disease and security, all sectors of the industry will likely need to demonstrate environmentally and socially responsible practices in the future. Speakers will provide big picture views on how the industry can prepare itself for what lies ahead.

Key note speakers include:

Dr. Mark Jaccard, professor in the School of Resource and Environmental Management at Simon Fraser University, who will speak on ?Climate Change and the Airline Industry?. Dr. Jaccard is a member of Canada?s National Roundtable on the Environment and the Economy and a research fellow at the CD Howe Institute. His 2002 book, The Cost of Climate Policy, won the Policy Research Institute award for best policy book in Canada, and was short-listed for the Donner Prize. His 2005 book, Sustainable Fossil Fuels, won the Donner Prize for best policy book in Canada. His latest book, Hot Air, co-authored with Jeffrey Simpson and Nic Rivers, was published this year by McClelland and Stewart.

Former B.C. Premier, Mike Harcourt, whose focus on conservation and sustainable development has played a significant role in promoting quality of life in the province. Mr. Harcourt will share his views on new ways of planning for the future of communities and the environment.

Tim Johnson, Director, Aviation Environment Federation, who represents the environmental NGO movement at meetings of the International Civil Aviation Organization?s Committee on Aviation Environmental Protection (CAEP). Established in 1975, the AEF is the principal environmental association in the UK concerned specifically with all the environmental effects of aviation. The Federation's membership comprises over 100 residents? groups, amenity and environmental organizations, and local authorities around the UK?s airports and airfields.

Panellists will include:

Sam Barone, President & CEO, Air Transport Association of Canada.
David L. Daggett, Technology Leader, Energy & Emissions, The Boeing Company.
Michael Feldman, Deputy Director, Aviation Division, Port of Seattle.
Melvin Heard, ?GEnx? ? GE Engine Division
Kerr Lammie, Associate, Stantec.
Meredith Moll, Sales and Marketing Manager, Harbour Air Seaplanes.
Anne Murray, VP, Community & Environmental Affairs, Vancouver International Airport Authority.
Glen Phillips, Senior Manager, Operations Research, WestJet.
Anna Pollock, Managing Director, Icarus Foundation & CEO, DestiCorp.
Bob Purdy, Director of Corporate Development, Fraser Basin Council.
Dr. James Tansey, Assistant Professor, UBC, and Co-founder, Offsetters.
Alec Simpson, Director, Environmental Programs, Transport Canada.
Dr. Mike Tretheway, Executive Vice President, InterVISTAS Consulting.

About BCAC

The BCAC is a Richmond B.C.-based non-profit society whose primary aim is to stimulate and encourage the safe, orderly development of aviation and aviation services in British Columbia. For more information visit


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