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MAKING HISTORY: United Airlines flies most eco-friendly flight of its kind

What did you get up to on World Environment Day? Well, while you were doing that, United Airlines was making history by operating the most eco-friendly commercial service of its kind.

What did you get up to on World Environment Day? Well, while you were doing that, United Airlines was making history by operating the most eco-friendly commercial service of its kind.

Call the ‘Flight for the Planet’, the special United Airlines service took off from Chicago O’Hare to Los Angeles over the weekend with sustainable aviation biofuel, zero cabin waste, carbon offsetting AND operational efficiencies.

It was as clean as a flight can get and is an extension to similar green flights recently by other airlines, including Qantas.

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“The historic Flight for the Planet showcases United’s philosophy of working together to find new and innovative ways to lead us into a more sustainable future.”

Scott Kirby, United Airlines President

“As an airline, we see our environment from a unique perspective every day and we know we must do our part to protect our planet and our skies.”

So what made this flight so special?

United powered the Flight for the Planet using a 30/70 blend of low-carbon, sustainable aviation fuel provided by Boston-based World Energy, and traditional jet fuel. The biofuel alone achieves a greater than 60 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions on a lifecycle basis compared to traditional jet fuel, and using biofuel is one of the most effective ways an airline can reduce its impact on the environment.

In the Economy cabin, United swapped traditional snack options with a complimentary plated service featuring fully recyclable or compostable serviceware, including a test of an industry-first, recyclable-paper, hot beverage cup.

Premium flyers saw plastics swapped with reusable service ware and beeswax food wrappers. The airline also removed the paper wrapping from silverware roll-ups.

And finally, the remainder of the flight’s emissions were offset via the airline’s new carbon offset provider, Conservation International. Conservation International now partners with United on the airline’s consumer carbon offset program – Eco-Skies CarbonChoice – and together the two allies will focus on CI’s mission to promote nature-based solutions to climate change.

Click here for more information on United’s commitment to environmental sustainability.

 

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