JetBlue Airways will begin offsetting carbon dioxide emissions on all its domestic flights starting in July, an initiative CEO Robin Hayes said the New York-based operator needed to undergo to prepare for a “new climate reality.” Expected to offset 7 to 8 million tonnes of emissions per year, the program marks one example of JetBlue’s efforts to mitigate its contribution to climate change. “We reduce where we can and offset where we can’t,” asserted Hayes. “By offsetting all of our domestic flying, we’re preparing our business for the lower-carbon economy that aviation—and all sectors—must plan for."
According to JetBlue, it will become the first large U.S. airline to offset emissions on all of its domestic flights. However, several European airlines already have established similar programs.
Since January 1, Air France and British Airways started to offset 100 percent of the CO2 emissions on their domestic flights. Air France operates some 450 daily flights within France and the company will finance the compensation projects, which CEO Anne Rigail told Le Parisien newspaper call for an investment of “several million euros.” BA’s domestic flying program is much smaller. The airline operates up to 75 flights a day between London and the UK destinations of Manchester, Leeds, Newcastle, Isle of Man, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen, Belfast City, Inverness, and Jersey.
In November last year, UK low-cost carrier EasyJet started offsetting the carbon emissions from the fuel used for all of its flights—network-wide. The carbon compensation will cost it about £25 million ($32.9 million) a year.
JetBlue did not disclose the cost of its planned CO2 offset program.
The U.S. carrier also will begin using sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) on its flights from San Francisco International Airport starting this summer, JetBlue said Monday. It has agreed to SAF from Finland’s Neste, a move the airline said will help “kick-start the SAF market and lead the economics on these lower-carbon fuels.”