Alaska Airlines and Lonely Whale has announced the airlines´ initiative to replace single-use, non-recyclable, plastic stir straws and citrus picks with sustainable alternatives in its airport lounges and on all domestic and international commercial flights starting July 16, 2018, the company said.
The initiative is one of many in Alaska Airlines´ push for sustainability and goal of reducing its inflight waste per passenger going to landfills by 70 percent by 2020.
The Earth Day Network declared ending plastic pollution to be the theme for Earth Day this year, which was April 22. The group challenged everyone to reduce the amount of plastic they consume.
Plastic straws are of special concern because they cannot be recycled and they´ve been shown to kill birds and other marine life. In 2017, Alaska Airlines handed out 22 million plastic stir straws and citrus picks. Those two items will be replaced starting in July with Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified, white birch stir sticks and a bamboo alternative for the citrus pick. Non-plastic, marine-friendly straws will be made available to guests with special needs and upon request.
To further reduce environmental impact, Alaska Airlines has replaced bottled beer with aluminum cans, which are lighter and easier to recycle; and a policy to refill plastic cups rather than requiring a new cup for every round of beverage service was reintroduced.
The Seattle-based airline is the US airline on the 2017 Dow Jones Sustainability Index, and has also been ranked No. 1 in fuel efficiency seven consecutive years by the International Council on Clean Transportation, an independent, nonprofit research organization.
For more information about Alaska Airlines environmental initiatives, visit www.alaskaair.com/sustainability.
Alaska Airlines and its regional partners fly 44 million guests a year to more than 115 destinations with an average of 1,200 daily flights across the United States and to Mexico, Canada and Costa Rica. With Alaska and Alaska Global Partners, guests can earn and redeem miles on flights to more than 900 destinations worldwide. Learn about Alaska´s award-winning service at newsroom.alaskaair.com and blog.alaskaair.com.
Lonely Whale is an award-winning incubator for courageous ideas that drive impactful market-based change on behalf of our ocean. Founded in December 2015 by Adrian Grenier and Lucy Sumner, Lonely Whale is inspired by the power of community to create the change needed to ensure a healthy planet. To learn more and support, visit www.lonelywhale.org or follow @LonelyWhale.