• Ron Kotrba

United program to facilitate purchase of 3.4 million gallons of SAF in 2021

Photo: United Airlines

United Airlines announced that, through its Eco-Skies Alliance program, more than a dozen global corporations will contribute toward the purchase of approximately 3.4 million gallons of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) in 2021—enough to eliminate 31,000 metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions or fly passengers more than 220 million miles.

The inaugural participants are reducing their aviation-related impact on the environment and creating demand for more SAF production. These companies include Autodesk, Boston Consulting Group, CEVA Logistics, Deloitte, DHL Global Forwarding, DSV Panalpina, HP Inc., Nike, Palantir, Siemens and Takeda Pharmaceuticals.

“While we've partnered with companies for years to help them offset their flight emissions, we applaud those participating in the Eco-Skies Alliance for recognizing the need to go beyond carbon offsets and support SAF-powered flying, which will lead to more affordable supply and ultimately, lower emissions,” said United CEO Scott Kirby. “This is just the beginning. Our goal is to add more companies to the Eco-Skies Alliance program, purchase more SAF and work across industries to find other innovative paths towards decarbonization.”

United says it has made the airline industry’s single largest investment in SAF and has purchased more of the fuel than any other airline in the world. World Energy, a long-term partner of United, will supply the SAF to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).

United is also giving customers the ability to contribute funds for additional SAF purchases or for use on initiatives United believes will help decarbonize aviation. United says it is the first of any U.S. airline to do this.

In addition, the airline is helping individuals connect with elected representatives to advocate for policies that would make air travel more sustainable for the long term. “We know there is a growing demand from a wide range of our customers including corporations, cargo shippers and individuals who share the same concern we do—that climate change is the most pressing issue of our generation,” Kirby said.

United has committed to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions 100 percent by 2050.

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