Alaska Airlines is introducing a groundbreaking program that allows travelers to buy sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) credits to help reduce the environmental impact of their flights. 

This initiative, announced recently, offers passengers the option to support SAF directly through their ticket purchases on the airline's website.

Alaska Airlines Pioneers SAF Credits, Eyes Carbon-Neutral Future

(Photo : John Feng on Unsplash)

Alaska Airlines Leads with New Eco-Friendly Program

Alaska Airlines is making it simpler for passengers to travel more sustainably by including SAF credit options during the booking process. This program, powered by climate technology company CHOOOSE, lets passengers choose to offset 5%, 10%, or 20% of the carbon emissions related to their flight, according to PR Newswire

The initiative is based on a calculation method that considers factors like fuel consumption and flight distance.

Building on a pilot program from late 2023, Alaska Airlines has also linked the purchase of SAF credits to its loyalty program benefits. Mileage PlanTM members can earn elite-qualifying miles (EQMs) for every dollar spent on SAF credits, with up to 5,000 EQMs available annually. 

The innovative approach not only promotes sustainability but also provides a path for frequent flyers to gain elite status faster.

Alaska Airlines is committed to achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2040. SAF, which can reduce carbon emissions by up to 80% over its lifecycle, is a significant part of the airline's strategy. Despite its benefits, the availability of SAF is currently limited. 

The airline is actively involved in partnerships and advocacy to expand the SAF market. The airline collaborates with companies like Microsoft, universities, and scientists to support research and policy changes that encourage the use of cleaner fuel options.

This initiative reflects Alaska Airlines' overall sustainability strategy, which focuses on caring for customers, employees, communities, and the planet. By choosing Alaska Airlines, passengers can now take an active role in making air travel more sustainable.

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Receives Additional Compensation from Boeing

Alaska Airlines has been given an extra $61 million in credits from Boeing. This comes after an incident where a door unexpectedly opened mid-flight on one of its planes. 

As per Flight Global, the amount is in addition to a $162 million cash payment Alaska Airlines received earlier from Boeing. The total compensation concerns issues with the airline's 737 Max 9 jets.

The Seattle-based Alaska Air Group reported these credits in a filing on May 3. They stated that the credits would be used for future Boeing purchases. This compensation will also help reduce the cost of some of their aircraft.

Earlier this year, following an accident on January 5, Alaska Airlines decided to ground all 65 of its Max 9 jets. The flight affected was going from Portland, Oregon, to Southern California. 

After this incident, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) also grounded many similar jets worldwide, causing Boeing problems and leading to company changes.

In addition to the Boeing issue, Alaska Airlines is also managing the financial aspects of its planned purchase of Hawaiian Airlines. They have already spent $8 million and expect more costs as they work to integrate the two airlines. 

The deal, however, faces a lawsuit claiming it could reduce competition and negatively affect Hawaii's tourism industry. Alaska Airlines believes the lawsuit has no basis and is working with the U.S. Department of Justice to get approval for the acquisition.

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