Airlines are under immense pressure to reduce their carbon footprint. They account for some 13% of the world C02 output. But in fact, airlines are making great progress and efforts. Swiss Air for example have covered their planes in a film that is inspired by shark skin that reduces aerodynamic drag and, as a result, lowers both inflight fuel consumption and carbon dioxide emissions.
Unfortunately. however, I was recently super disappointed not about the C02 (I offset that personally) but for the lack of effort Thai airways are making in other environmental areas. In particular, the use of plastic from the lounge to the plane is outrageous. Plastic knives, forks, plastic cups, everywhere. Every meal, every component, every blanket – wrapped in disposable plastic. I would hate to think how much plastic comes off one long-haul flight. (Well actually, Airline passengers alone generated 5.7 million tons of waste globally in 2016.)
Of course, Thai Airways, you are not solely guilty. But, I fly a lot and the shear quantity of plastic I personally shed on my recent flights with you were the most I have ever experienced. How about you start looking at many of the components on your flights and see if you can reduce waste? Maybe start with recyclable bamboo cutlery, maybe you don’t need to warp every towel (in the lounge), every blanket, every bread roll in plastic.
We all need to look at what we can do to reduce waste. Chapeau to Qantas whom I read replaced the 1,000-plus single-use plastic items with biodegradable alternatives made from sugarcane and crop starch or, in the case of certain products — like individually packaged milk or Vegemite — removed them altogether.