Southwest Airlines - Smart Energy Decisions

Commercial, GHG Emissions  -  October 20, 2021

Southwest Airlines Plans Carbon Neutral Business Growth

Southwest Airlines announced Oct. 18 its plan to maintain carbon neutrality to 2019 carbon levels while growing its operations over the next 10 years.

The airline is pursuing a goal to reach full carbon neutrality by 2050 and plans to reduce Scope 1 and 2 carbon emissions per available seat mile by 20% by 2030. To do so, the company plans to focus on investing $10 billion into modernizing its fleet, identifying ways to make more efficient use of airspace and converting ground services equipment to electric models. The company has already invested more than $630 million in fuel efficiency initiatives since 2002.

"As a leading global citizen, we're building on prior efforts to address our environmental impact, and with today's announcement, we're setting goals to reduce our carbon emission intensity and increase SAF in our operations; and we're working to advance knowledge in the field of sustainability," Bob Jordan, executive vice president and incoming CEO at Southwest Airlines, said in a statement.

Its sustainability strategy also includes replacing 10% of its jet fuel consumption with sustainable aviation fuel by 2030 and plans to purchase 5 million gallons of SAF through a partnership with Neste through December 2023.

Southwest will offset its remaining emissions with airline carbon offsets, in which Southwest will match every dollar contributed by customers toward offsetting its emissions. Customers will also earn bonus loyalty points for each dollar they contribute toward offsetting.

As of May 2021, the airline’s Dallas corporate campus has also sourced 100% renewable electricity through the purchase of RECs.

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