Great article about United’s partnership with the Environmental Defense Fund
One of Many Aviation Green Initiatives getting little Media Coverage
Important Carbon Reduction that Deserves more Notice
This article found in the Chicago Business Journal (and no where else!) heralds on aspect of United Airlines to cut greenhouse gases by partnering with the Environmental Defense Fund. A simple google search did not result in any other media reports on the same subject. Further, the information available about all of United’s green efforts is extensive (see below).
Aviation’s efforts to reduce CO2 must not make good copy because they do not receive coverage commensurate to their importance.
As part of its eco-skies effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, United Airlines on Wednesday forged a new partnership with the Environmental Defense Fund.
By Lewis Lazare – Reporter, Chicago Business Journal
Aug 21, 2019, 2:51pm EDT
United Airlines on Wednesday inked a new partnership with the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) to help the carrier realize its ambitious goal of cutting greenhouse emissions by 50 percent by 2050.
EDF’s new relationship with United marks the first time the organization has worked with an airline. Because United’s own eco-skies team doesn’t necessarily have all the answers to develop a road map to majorly reduce emissions, the new partnership will bring to the table experts from EDF to assist.
Noted EDF President Fred Krupp: “Accelerating carbon reductions from the aviation sector is critical to solving the climate crisis. Powerful partnerships like the one EDF is forming with United align the strong science, market forces and information sharing needed to scale change, providing a blueprint for other airlines to follow. We look forward to a productive partnership.”
United has for the past several years touted various of its high-profile eco-friendly initiatives [see below for a few of them], and the partnership with New York City-based EDF is yet another way to spotlight the carrier’s aggressive stance on becoming a more environmentally friendly company.
Added United President Scott Kirby: “Being an industry leader in environmental sustainability means more than just committing to reducing our carbon footprint. It means working together with respected organizations like EDF to help us implement practical solutions to overcome the most urgent environmental challenges we face as a company, industry and community.”
In the early stages of the new relationship between United and EDF, the two entities will evaluate how to meet the targets laid out in the so-called Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA) — a standard established by the United Nations to limit carbon emissions on international flights.
While EDF is new to working with United and the airline industry, the not-for-profit environmental organization’s history dates back to the 1970’s, when its first client was burger behemoth McDonald’s (NYSE: MCD). A spokeswoman for EDF said the organization continues to work with McDonald’s from time to time. EDF also has had an ongoing relationship with Walmart (NYSE: WMT) for more than a decade.
The EDF spokeswoman said the organization does not accept contributions from clients with whom it has active partnerships.
Chicago-based United Airlines is a unit of United Airlines Holdings (NASDAQ: UAL).”
The quinoa and kale wrap served on United Airlines’ “Flight for the Planet” came on a compostable plate and with compostable cutlery. (Photo: Ryan Hood, United Airlines)
“Innovation and sustainability are twin engines that drive our progress as the most environmentally conscious airline in the world.
United is committed to innovating solutions that we hope will become the expectation for our industry, not the exception.
The measure of our success is the opinion of our children and grandchildren who will look back on our efforts and say that we lived up to our obligations to them in protecting the planet for future generations.”
— Oscar Munoz, Chief Executive Officer
Customers can purchase CarbonChoice offsets for travel when checking in at united.com or any time before or after a flight, and MileagePlus members can also utilize miles to purchase offsets, both by visiting united.com/carbonchoice. In addition, United’s corporate sales and cargo customers now have the ability to purchase a complete carbon-neutral travel option for all flights on United. For more information on this enterprise-level solution, please visit united.com/carbonchoice.
Along with its robust carbon-offset program, United has further demonstrated leadership in environmental sustainability by establishing several ambitious initiatives and programs. United’s recent achievements include:
- United is a leader in the advancement and use of sustainable aviation biofuel, making history in commercial aviation with its partnership with AltAir Fuels to bring commercial-scale, cost-competitive renewable jet fuel to its Los Angeles hub this year and was awarded in 2015 by the World Bio Markets for Excellence in Advanced Biofuels for this program.
- The company in early 2014 became the first airline in the world to fly with the split scimitar winglet technology that cuts fuel consumption by up to an additional 2 percent over the airline’s existing fuel-saving winglet technology.
- The company in 2014 reduced CO2 emissions by more than 1 million metric tons and reduced fuel consumption by more than 110 million gallons through fuel efficiency, equal to removing more than 225,000 cars from the road.
- The airline increased orders for new Boeing and Airbus aircraft that are 15 to 20 percent more fuel efficient than those they will replace, and now has more than 260 of these new, fuel-efficient aircraft on order.
- United Eco-Skies continues to partner and provide sustainable travel options to our customers, most recently with the introduction of Eco-Skies Vacation packages available on unitedvacations.com.
- United Eco-Skies is partnering with Smithsonian.com to encourage and recognize sustainable travelers who demonstrate leadership and an active commitment to travel for environmentally responsible purposes, generating positive social, economic, or environmental outcomes in the local communities visited. Photographers can submit their pictures in the Sustainable Travel category, made possible through the support of United Eco-Skies, by visiting http://www.smithsonianmag.com/photocontest/tags/sustainable-travel/?no-ist.
- The company’s Eco-Skies Community Grants program encourages United employees who volunteer their time and efforts to environmental organizations in their communities. To date, United has awarded nearly $100,000 to environmental groups.
How much of the above did you know?
Please share this with your local media, elected officials and friends!!!
THE AIRLINES ARE WORKING HARD TO GET GREENER and few know it!!!
 APOLOGIES TO THE NYT FOR A VARIATION ON ITS TAG LINE (ALTHOUGH NOT TRUE HERE). In 1897, Adolph S. Ochs, the owner of The New York Times, created the famous slogan “All the News That’s Fit to Print,” which still appears on the masthead of the newspaper today. He wrote the slogan as a declaration of the newspaper’s intention to report the news impartially.
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