Operator Ecocopter provides some of its H125 helicopters for a variety of good causes and sustainable missions, including a pioneering project that creates new glaciers in the Andes – increasing the availability of water.



Ecocopter’s helicopters cover a wide range of missions, from fire-fighting to the energy sector, medical rescue to agriculture and many more. This operational spread is also mirrored in its approach to protecting the natural environment - something that is clearly important to Marcelo Rajchman, the company’s CEO. “Since 2021, every year we measure the C02 emitted by our helicopters,” he continues. “With our sustainability policy, we then offset 100% of our fleet’s carbon footprint through different environmental projects.”

Chile has a unique geography, a long, stiletto-thin dagger of land on the west coast of South America, most of which is mountainous. A factor that strongly influences the projects Ecocopter chooses to support. “A big part of our activity corresponds to work in the Andes, in the high mountains and that is why the project 'Guardians of the Mountain' was born, precisely to protect it,” explains Rajchman, Ecocopter CEO.

Rising to high demands - glaciers go vertical

This year, one of the initiatives that the company is supporting is the Nilus project, a nature-based solution to store water and protect resources that sustainably manage and restore foothill ecosystems - specifically, by creating artificial glaciers in the Cordillera.

Glaciers play an essential role in Chile’s ecosystem, with a recent report stating there are more than 26,000 glaciers, covering 2.8% of the country’s territory. This represents a significant volume of ice and therefore a significant amount of water – consequently they are of huge importance to the country’s water supply. With the potential of climate change to impact access to water supply, ensuring populations have access to clean water is vital and has an impact on not only sustainability and biodiversity but also global security. The 2024 World Water Day’s theme is Water for Peace – which has the aim of protecting and conserving such an essential resource.

The Nilus project takes its inspiration from a similar endeavour in the Himalayas, where Sonam Wangchuk, an engineer, created Ice Stupas, a form of artificial glacier which allows water to be stored. Resembling a pyramid of ice means that during winter, the speed the ice melts at is reduced as less surface area is exposed to the sun. This in turn allows water to be stored during the winter and then accessed in the summer – increasing the melting cycle.

With time clearly of the essence when it comes to pioneering sustainable solutions, in this instance, the support of a helicopter represented a huge advantage. 

The H125 was able to carry the materials which allowed eight artificial glaciers to be created this winter. In terms of pure transportation, it saved about two months of work.

Marcelo Rajchman, Ecocopter CEO

The H125, of which Ecocopter has 14 in its fleet, was able to make this impact because of its excellent performance at high altitude. Alongside its operational versatility, it is perfectly suited to meet the needs of the most demanding operations in the Andean Cordillera - fact borne out by the 73 H125 family helicopters currently flying in the Southern Cone region of the Americas.



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