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ARRIVALS EVENT REPORT

BTA Conference Sustainability in the spotlight The GTMC revealed a new name and identity at its Netherlands conference in July, with the organisation moving forward as the Business Travel Association. Andy Hoskins reports from the event. Sustainable travel initiatives are firmly back on the corporate agenda if sentiment at the BTA Conference can be presumed to emanate across the industry. The majority of sessions touched on the subject at the annual event, which also saw the organisation unveil its new identity as the Business Travel Association (see p53). “We all need to take responsibility for sustainable growth,” said IATA’s Aleks Popovich. “We’ve got a good track record [as an industry] but we need to be stronger if we’re going to grow sustainably. We need to deliver more to earn the right to grow.” Andy Shand (pictured), General Manager of Customer Affairs at NATS, added that in a period when the total distance flown in the UK domestic air space has grown 39%, emissions have risen by only 20%. However, he said that UK airspace tools and procedures need modernising to cope with traffic growth and, in order to do it sustainably, the airspace must be managed much more efficiently. “It needs NATS, airports and airlines to work together,” he

said. “The government does currently understands the need for change.” Conservative MP James Heappey claimed the aviation industry is “disproportionately blamed for not decarbonising quickly enough” but added that, in the not-toodistant future, “we’re going to have to make a robust case for travelling to do business”. Birmingham Airport's Aviation Director, Tom Screen, suggested that airports should offer incentives to airlines using

greener, more fuel-efficient aircraft. Jo-Anne Lloyd of business travel consultancy Nina & Pinta believes APD could be replaced with a carbon offset tax, but also indicated a degree of confusion among travel managers as to how to address their environmental responsibilities. “We need simplification,” said Lloyd. “Emissions are calculated differently around the world and there is little regulation of offsetting,” she claimed.

NEW IN THE CHAIR

END OF THE TENDER

CARBON CONSCIENCE

Suzanne Horner, CEO of Gray Dawes Group, is the BTA's new Chair of its executive board. She takes over from Paul Allan who steps down following Clarity's acquisition of Ian Allan Travel earlier this year.

“THE RFP PROCESS IS DEAD. IT CREATES UNNECESSARY WORK FOR BUYERS AND SUPPLIERS AND WE ARE READY TO GET RID OF IT”

For its overseas conference in Noordwijk, Netherlands, the BTA offset the emissions of 170 flights from London to Amsterdam with ClimateCare, offsetting 20.47 tonnes of CO2.

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Stephanie Smook, ACTE’s Regional Director for EMEA

THEBUSINESSTRAVELMAG.COM

Event Report BTA.indd 14

7/25/19 05:18 PM

Profile for BMI Publishing Ltd

The Business Travel Magazine August-September 2019  

The multi-award-winning publication written and produced for bookers, buyers, arrangers and managers of business travel and meetings. This i...

The Business Travel Magazine August-September 2019  

The multi-award-winning publication written and produced for bookers, buyers, arrangers and managers of business travel and meetings. This i...