The 10 megawatts of Denver International Airport's solar panels generate enough electricity to power 2,500 homes.
Denver International Airport (DEN) is dedicated to environmental performance and energy efficiency. DEN is a short train ride or drive away from the sustainable Colorado Convention Center and a variety of other conference venues, making Denver a convenient eco-friendly destination for your next event or meeting.
DEN is world-renowned for its pioneering Environmental Management System (EMS), which provides a systematic approach to managing the airport's environmental impacts and to promoting and encouraging continual environmental performance improvement.
- In 2015, DEN became the 4th U.S. airport group to be recognized by the Airport Carbon Accreditation program, an international program to measure, manage, and reduce airport greenhouse gas emissions.
- 26 new water bottle filling stations along the concourses have saved millions of plastic water bottles from going to the landfill since they were installed in 2013.
- DEN collected 70 percent of all deicing fluid applied to aircraft during the 2014-15 winter season, an industry-leading percentage that prevented more than 1.39 million gallons of the fluid from being released into the environment.
- DEN's deicing fluid recycling system saved the airport more than $2 million in 2014-15 compared to the costs of treating the fluid as wastewater.
- In 2015, the airport expanded recycling, composting, and food donation programs to divert more than 2,100 tons of municipal solid waste from the landfill.
- All of DEN's passenger gates include 400 Hz electricity and pre-conditioned air to improve air quality and reduce noise on the airfield, while saving money by allowing aircraft to shut down their auxiliary power units.
- DEN recycles more than 20 separate materials - from paper to plastic bottles to restaurant grease and construction debris.
- In 2013, DEN became the first commercial airport in the U.S. to design a truly comprehensive plan of Area Navigation (RNAV) that fully utilizes NextGen technology and procedures that allow aircraft to have smoother approaches and fly more efficient routes. The new procedures save 200-800 pounds of fuel per flight, resulting in fewer emissions and less wasted fuel.
- In 2014, DEN replaced 5,400 parking garage lights with energy-efficient LED fixtures, saving $327,000 per year in electricity costs.
- DEN started composting in 2010, and between the Airport Office Building, terminal restrooms, and participating restaurants, now composts over 200 tons per year of organic waste.
- DEN commissioned the first of four on-airport solar arrays in 2008. Today, the 10 megawatts of solar panels generate enough electricity to power 2,500 homes.
- DEN moved to a single-stream recycling program in 2007, and is now recycling nearly 2,000 tons of cardboard, plastic, aluminum, and wood each year.
- In 2013, DEN opened 10 Level 1 electric vehicle charging stations in the public parking garages. There are now 41 Level 1 and 2 chargers across the airport.
- DEN became the first commercial service airport in North America to have an internationally certified Environmental Management System covering all operations, and has been recognized as a Gold Level Leader in Colorado's Environmental Leadership Program for 12 years.
Airport Rail Service
It's now easier than ever to get from DEN to downtown Denver, which provides a green way to travel.
At a cost of $10.50 each way (with discounts available), travelers can use the new rail service, known as the A Line, from the airport to Denver Union Station and vice versa courtesy of the Regional Transportation District (RTD), metro Denver's public transit provider.
The A Line, accessible on Level 1 of the airport's main terminal, whisks travelers to the heart of downtown, specifically the recently restored Union Station, which is the city's new transportation hub and "living room," thanks to its plush surroundings. From Union Station, travelers can access additional local and regional transportation services, such as light rail, regional and local buses, Amtrak rail service, taxis, and the free 16th Street Mall shuttle (MallRide) and free downtown MetroRide buses that provides access to most downtown hotels. Union Station itself is a beautiful 1914 Beaux-Arts building and the location of hip, locally owned restaurants, bars, shops and a boutique hotel.
The airport rail has six stops along the way and takes approximately 37 minutes. It opened on April 22, 2016.