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60 Airport Taxis Written Off in Drive to Reduce Carbon Emissions

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This is in line with an agreement between taxi operators, Uganda Civil Aviation Authority and the International Air Transport Association – IATA to improve the mode of transport at different airports across the country.
Airport taxi's in the new parking lot at Entebbe International Airport

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Civil Aviation Authority-CAA has disqualified 60 taxis from operating at Entebbe International Airport on account of being old.  The affected taxis, manufactured majorly before 2003, were discontinued between September 2019 and January 7, 2020. 

This is in line with an agreement between taxi operators, Uganda Civil Aviation Authority and the International Air Transport Association – IATA to improve the mode of transport at different airports across the country.

The agreement is aimed at reducing carbon emissions at Entebbe international airport.  Some of the main contributors of the carbon emissions at airports include gasoline and diesel fuel for airport vehicles and ground support equipment, fossil fuel for electricity and heating, jet fuel for auxiliary power units that power aircraft at airport gates, among other sources.     

It is upon this background that the Civil Aviation Authority directed operators to get rid of the taxis, especially those manufactured before 2003. Jackson Sserubidde, the chairperson of Airport Taxi drivers, says the idea to ban old vehicles from the airport has helped them to upgrade their vehicles and eased transport. 

//Cue in; “Buli ekaddiwa kati …   

Cue out… bank, n’akyuusa emotoka.”//    

Sserubidde says the association intends to stop 30 other old taxis from operating at the airport. The operators of the affected taxis have been offered secured loans from different banks within Entebbe to purchase new vans. About 300 taxis operate at Entebbe International Airport. 

Kassim Kisitu, an Airport Taxi Operator whose vehicle was written off, says the idea has helped all those with old vehicles to upgrade not only to reduce carbon emissions but also on safety grounds.

Vianney Luggya, the Public Affairs Manager Uganda Civil Aviation Authority, says the laying off of old vehicles presumed to be emitting excessive carbon is part of the wider project that will see the reduction of emissions from the different sources at Entebbe International airport. 

Other machines emitting excessive carbon like those used in ground handling are also being laid off. Both DAS and NAS, which are involved in ground handling services, have started upgrading from machines that use fuel to electricity.  According to a 2010 report from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration - NASA, air crafts emit the highest emissions at an airport.

About 25 per cent of aeroplane emissions come from landing and taking off. That includes taxiing, which is the largest source of emissions in the landing-takeoff cycle.  According to some estimates, about 20,000 planes are in use around the world, serving three billion passengers annually. 

Bills Andrea, an Aeronautical Engineer at Entebbe International Airport says Civil Aviation Authority shouldn’t only focus on airport taxi operators and ground handling services to reduce emissions but also engage airliners on how to reduce carbon emissions from different aircraft.

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