Alaska Airlines Says No to Inflight Plastic Cups
Alaska Air Group, Inc
Alaska Airlines said it has finished switching over to paper cups for drinks on board. This move eliminates the use of more than 55 million plastic cups annually and replaces them with a more environmentally friendly alternative. This is a significant step towards reducing the airline's environmental footprint and promoting sustainable practices.
This change, combined with its Boxed Water™ partnership, is aimed at reducing the amount of plastic waste the airline generates and eliminating 2.2 million pounds of plastic waste annually. This is equivalent to the weight of 24 Boeing 737 aircraft.
"Doing the right thing is one of our core values, and nothing is more right and urgent than protecting the beautiful places that we connect our guests to through flight," said Todd Traynor-Corey, managing director of guest products for Alaska Airlines. "This is another important step in our journey to eliminate single-use plastics and an important step for the industry to see how product innovations can chart a course to a greener future."
Alaska Airlines has implemented several measures to reduce its plastic waste. All inflight beverages are now served in Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)-certified paper cups or reusable glassware for most First Class services. The airline also began the process of eliminating its five largest sources of plastic waste in 2018 by removing plastic straws and stir sticks from inflight service, which was a first for any airline at the time.
Alaska Airlines kept working to cut down on plastic waste in 2021 by replacing plastic water bottles on planes with Boxed Water™.
Boxed Water™ cartons are made from plant-based paper that is 92% renewable and FSC-certified. This saves about 1.8 million pounds of single-use plastic on the airline's flights every year.
"Eliminating plastics is a team effort," said Traynor-Corey. "It requires broad collaboration with our supply chain partners and inflight team to make new products and practices that move us toward a future with less plastic. That progress only happens with a deeply shared commitment to care for our environment."
Alaska Airlines is taking active steps to reduce the amount of plastic waste it generates and promote sustainable practices. Single-use plastics can hurt the environment in many ways, such as increasing the need for fossil fuels, making millions of tonnes of trash, and polluting waterways and natural areas. The airline is trying to get rid of its five biggest plastic waste sources and recycle as much as it can. The company also encourages its guests to bring their own water bottles to fill before they fly as a way to reduce waste.
As part of its larger efforts to be more sustainable, Alaska Airlines has set goals for its carbon, waste, and water impacts on the climate and mapped out a five-step plan to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2040. This is to keep the places we live and fly beautiful and viable for future generations.