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Biofuels and carbon offsets power Delta’s first carbon-neutral flights

July 17, 2019 Aviation No Comments Email Email

The newest A321 in Delta’s fleet will make its initial flight today – completely carbon-neutral, a first for Delta as it continues to make strategic moves to bolster its ongoing sustainability commitments.

Delta has partnered with Air BP to supply biofuels for an initial 20 delivery flights from the Airbus final assembly line in Mobile, Ala. which are manufactured and refined via sustainable sources and processes. The first flight will depart Mobile, Ala. for a facility in Kansas City where final induction work will be performed before the aircraft moves into service for Delta’s customers across its extensive domestic route network.

“Today’s carbon-neutral delivery flight is a milestone on Delta’s sustainability journey as we work to cut carbon emissions in half by 2050,” said Alison Lathrop, Delta’s Managing Director – Global Environment, Sustainability and Compliance. “We are excited to partner with Air BP and Airbus to power these delivery flights with biofuels and carbon offsets, and will explore opportunities to bring this level of sustainability to all delivery flights going forward.”

Since 2005, the airline has reduced its jet fuel consumption, leading to an 11 percent decrease in emissions as it works toward its long-term goal of achieving carbon-neutral growth and reducing carbon emissions by 50 percent by 2050. Delta was the first and only U.S. airline to voluntarily cap carbon emissions at 2012 levels by purchasing carbon offsetsahead of the ICAO CORSIA implementation, which caps international emissions at 2019/2020 levels.

Customers can join Delta in offsetting the environmental impact of their flights by visiting delta.com/co2.

“Airbus is committed to being part of the solution for meeting aviation’s global CO2emissions reduction targets,” said Simone Rauer, Head of Aircraft Operations for Environmental Affairs at Airbus. “Contributing to a lasting decrease of our industry’s carbon footprint is key to ensuring a sustainable future for aviation.”

“We are proud to help Delta achieve its sustainability goals for the maiden voyages of their new Airbus aircraft,” said Jon Platt, CEO of Air BP. “Air BP is supplying sustainable aviation fuel, produced by Neste, for 20 delivery flights, and through the BP Target Neutral program we are offsetting the residual carbon emissions of each delivery flight. This is another example of BP’s commitment to advancing the energy transition and helping our customers meet their lower carbon goals. We hope this project inspires others to follow suit.”

Delta is also the first U.S. airline to recycle aluminum cans, plastic bottles and cups, and newspapers and magazines from aircraft, accounting for the recycling of more than 3 million pounds of aluminum from onboard waste. Delta is also removing a variety of single-use plastic items, including stir sticks, wrappers, utensils and straws from its aircraft and Sky Clubs, and removed all plastic wrapping from international Main Cabin cutlery and its new amenity kits for all cabins. These efforts will divert over 300,000 pounds of plastic from landfills each year.

This sustainability work and more has resulted in Delta being awarded the Vision for America Award by Keep America Beautiful in 2017 and the Captain Planet Foundation’s Superhero Corporate Award in 2018, as well as being named to the FTSE4Good Index four consecutive years and the Dow Jones Sustainability North America Index for eight consecutive years.

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