We are focused on providing safe and secure airports that support the social, economic and environmental wellbeing of the Southern Lakes region.

Supporting our community

We believe that being a good neighbour means playing an active part in our local and regional communities. These communities include people working in and around the airport, those living near the airport and across the wider region.

We are mindful of the impact our airports have on our closest neighbours.  In 2014 we introduced our Aircraft Noise Management Plan, which is overseen by the Airport Noise Liaison Committee and primarily directed at homes most affected by aircraft noise.  For more information visit our Aircraft Noise Management page.

Members of our team also take part in initiatives such as “Shaping Our Future”, its associated Visitor and Tourism Industry and Transport Task Forces, and the Regional Transport Governance Group so that we play our part in contributing to a better future for the region. 

Supporting our region

We respect and celebrate the different communities that we serve, and our team reflects the diversity of people and cultures in our region.

We are committed to supporting our regional communities in many ways, backing the efforts of not-for-profit organisations, and getting behind various local events. 

Here are some of the community organisations we have supported over the past year:

  • Coastguard Queenstown
  • Wakatipu Search and Rescue
  • The Wakatipu High School Foundation
  • Branches Trust
  • Autism New Zealand
  • Cancer Society
  • The Going Bananas Show
  • HeartKids
  • Wakatipu Reforestation Trust
  • Queenstown Lakes Women
  • Queenstown Arts Centre
  • Spirit of Wakatipu Awards

We also recognise the potential of large-scale events to support the economic diversity of our region whilst celebrating the heritage of our place.

Here are some of the events we have supported over the past two years:

  • Real Journeys Queenstown Winter Festival
  • Festival of Colour
  • Warbirds Over Wanaka
  • Winter Pride - Roll out the Rainbow
  • Queenstown International Marathon - Kids Run

If you or a community organisation you're involved in would like to apply for support, please review the criteria available online and submit your application to the Corporate & Community Affairs team.

Supporting education, innovation, development opportunities, and leadership initiatives

We feel strongly about the opportunities that learning and education bring.  We measure our success as a business not just on the social returns we can deliver to our communities, as well as the financial dividends. Our airports bring together talent, experience, and innovation from the region and from afar. We see this as an opportunity to ensure that our communities have access to the opportunities and insights this brings. We offer career and leadership opportunities. We support a range of initiatives through schools, universities, charities and community groups within the region through:

  • Our Airport Community Education Programme
  • Sponsorships and partnerships
  • Scholarships
  • Employment and training partnerships
  • We also provide operational support to NASA and assist with the logistics of their annual super pressure balloon launch at Wanaka Airport

Please click here for more information on our education programme.

Supporting our people and environment

While tourism and travel bring a range of benefits to New Zealand, it’s important that we manage their effects responsibly and play our part in kaitiakitanga – the guardianship of our place – to preserve what makes us special.

Our sustainability journey is ongoing however here are some key highlights 2019:

Living Wage Aotearoa accreditation

Queenstown Airport Corporation (QAC) became the first airport company in New Zealand to achieve Living Wage accreditation. News of the accreditation came just in time to mark Living Wage Week in November 2019.

Read more about our 'one team' philosophy and the accreditation achievement here.

Submission on QLDC's Draft Climate Action Plan 

Queenstown Airport Corporation (QAC) provided a submission on QLDC’s draft climate action plan on 30 August 2019. 

QAC is committed to doing its part to achieve the goals of net zero carbon emissions and net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

We are conscious of the importance of offsetting the impacts of our business activities at Queenstown and Wanaka airports on climate change and want to lead the way in our sector in this critical area.

We recognise the important role that we can play in the Draft Plan’s stated purpose ‘to build the district’s resilience to the harmful effects of climate change and transition to a zero carbon future’. We also support the proposed ‘collaborative approach with the community, partners and stakeholders’ and will contribute in this collaboration effort, working closely with all of our stakeholders to influence the wider airport communities.

We are committed to a long-term strategy of saving energy, reducing waste and reducing carbon emissions from our business activities supported by detailed measurement, clear targets and robust reporting. We are also implementing an environmental management system, which includes an energy management plan and carbon mapping.

View QLDC's Draft Climate Action Plan.

Read QAC's full submission.

NZ Airports 'Sustainability Initiative of the Year'

The award-winning partnership with Downer NZ allowed QAC to make a 'step-change' in how we deliver major infrastructure projects, from concept to execution, helping us develop a sustainable, innovative and operationally resilient solution which not only had our community and environment at the heart but allowed us to meet our stringent health, safety and security standards.

Fun facts

  • Over 55,000m2 milled/asphalted
  • 12,000 tonnes of asphalt used
  • 1.5 million bottles recycled, turned to sand and used as an alternative to virgin aggregate
  • 330,000 printer cartridges used as alternative asphalt binder product
  • 70,000km saved in cartage and haulage requirements by using an onsite mobile asphalt plant

For more on the project check-out the news release or view the behind the scenes video to see how it was done!

Zero emissions ground power trial

Airports all over the world are beginning to think greener.  

To reduce aircraft emissions at airports, battery-powered Ground Support Equipment (or GSE, as it’s commonly referred to) is rapidly replacing diesel-powered kit like cargo loaders and pushback tractors.  

We are delighted that Air New Zealand has chosen Queenstown Airport to trial a new zero-emission Mobile Electric Ground Power Unit (GPU) on its A320 jets which produces NO carbon emissions and NO noise whilst parked at the gate.

The two-month trial started in November and is currently assessing the battery autonomy of the ITW GSE 7400 unit to determine whether it can supply power long enough to make it a viable alternative to Air New Zealand’s diesel GPUs.

Background

The ITW GSE 7400 is the world's first battery-powered GPU and provides an option for an environmentally friendly solution.  Despite being a new product, it utilises 2 mature technology, which is the ITW GSE 2400 GPU.  It is currently used at Auckland and Christchurch airports as gate power as well as in the Nissan Leaf Car battery pack.  

The mobile GPU is equipped with the exact protection measures as a traditional diesel GPU and is only different from a fuel perspective (battery pack vs fuel tank).