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Back You are here: Home Low-Carbon Low-Carbon Biz Alaska Air Group boasts recycling, efficiency gains for 2011

Low-Carbon Biz

Alaska Air Group boasts recycling, efficiency gains for 2011

Enough to build three new airplanes – that’s how much aluminum the Alaska Air Group recycled in 2011 according to their first comprehensive corporate sustainability report released this week.

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The Alaska Air Group, through its subsidiaries Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air, serves 90 cities throughout North America, including Alaska, Hawaii, Canada and Mexico.

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In its report, the group highlighted its in-flight recycling program which the company said diverted more than 8,000 tons of in-flight waste from landfills, including around 230 tons of aluminum and 185 tons of paper.

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All in all, flight attendants recycled 91 percent of all paper, plastic, aluminum and glass generated onboard Horizon flights, while diverting 49 percent of recyclable materials on Alaska flights.

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The report details the group’s efforts to reduce emissions from fleet. This includes shifting to exclusively flying Boeing 737’s and Bombardier Q400’s, said to be the most fuel-efficient aircraft in their classes. Alaska and Horizon recorded 30 percent less carbon emissions for their efforts, with Alaska currently the most-efficient domestic carrier in the United States in terms of fuel per revenue passenger mile.

In addition, the two airlines reportedly operated 75 passenger flights powered by a 20 percent biofuel blend in November last year as part of a biofuel project with Sustainable Aviation Fuels Northwest. The flights demonstrated the viability of this alternative aviation fuel, if an adequate supply was developed.

The group said it intends to reduce emissions from their ground support equipment vehicles, switching from fossil fuel to electric whenever possible. Alaska has set a goal to increase the percentage of EV’s in their ground fleet from 10 percent to 20 percent by the end of 2013. Horizon currently has 65 percent of their ground fleet running on electricity.

The group intends to implement energy efficiency renovations on the lighting, heating and insulation systems of their offices, terminals, cargo facilities and other buildings. They have also started incorporating renewable energy with a wind and solar energy project in their Nome Airport facility.

“Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air strive to be good airlines for our customers, good places to work for our employees, a good business for our investors and environmental stewards of our planet,” said Brad Tilden, Alaska Air Group’s president and chief executive during the release of their 2012 Sustainability Report, which is said to conform with the Global Reporting Initiative, an international standard for “triple bottom line” reporting. – EcoSeed Staff

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