ATLANTA, June 18, 2007 – Delta Air Lines (NYSE: DAL) today announced expanded “green efforts” with this month’s launch of its carbon offset program and expanded onboard recycling. Customers can now contribute toward the offset of carbon emissions associated with air travel through a donation to The Conservation Fund, a leading environmental nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting land and water resources. Customers who purchase a ticket at delta.com can choose to contribute $5.50 for domestic roundtrip flights and $11 for international roundtrip flights to be used by The Conservation Fund to plant trees throughout the U.S. and abroad. A small portion of the donation also supports the organization’s education and outreach efforts.
Delta also launched a comprehensive on-board recycling program that expands beyond traditional aluminum can recycling to include all aluminum, plastic and paper products on domestic flights into Atlanta. The program includes recycling newspapers, snack containers, soda cans and water bottles. Proceeds from Delta’s expanded recycling program will continue to benefit Habitat for Humanity.
In the first two weeks of the program, Delta flight attendants recycled approximately five tons of material.
“Many of our customers and employees worldwide are passionate about global environmental issues, and Delta is committed to providing a platform to enable them to take action,” said Jim Whitehurst, Delta’s chief operating officer. “Delta is the first and only U.S. carrier to offer a program that enables customers to help promote positive global environmental change through carbon offsets and we continue to raise the bar across the industry when it comes to on-board recycling.”
In April, Delta announced a partnership with The Conservation Fund to become the first U.S. airline to help its customers give back to the environment by buying trees to help offset carbon emissions associated with air travel. To kick off the initiative, Delta made a donation to The Conservation Fund for every customer who took a Delta mainline or Delta Shuttle flight on Earth Day, April 22, and also made a commitment to plant a tree for each of the airline’s more than 47,000 employees. These first trees will be planted within The United States in protected areas across the Gulf Coast region – an area that has lost more than 20 million acres of forestland in the last century – beginning this fall.
The newly planted forests will help to absorb carbon dioxide, filter water, restore wildlife habitat and enhance public recreation areas. As the program grows, Delta plans to invite employees and customers to participate in ceremonial tree plantings in cities worldwide.
Many of the world's top organizations and most respected brands support The Conservation Fund's Climate Change Program including the Walt Disney Company, The North Face, Gaiam Inc., The Home Depot, Timberland, ESPN X Games, Universal Studios, New Line Cinema, Creative Artists Agency, United Talent Agency, Yale School of Forestry and U-Haul.
Delta’s new program is one of the airline’s many efforts to effect positive environmental change. Other ongoing programs include:
- Continuous product improvements including offering biodegradable amenity kits on-board, beginning in August 2007, for customers traveling in BusinessElite®, the airline’s international, business-class service as well as customers in economy class on long-haul international flights. These kits will feature products that are all-natural, biodegradable, and/or recyclable;
- Fuel conservation initiatives such as weight reduction efforts, engine washes, engine refurbishment, the institution of continuous descent approaches and industry leadership in single engine taxis which saved more than 25 million gallons of fuel in 2006 alone;
- A system designed to reduce water consumption by 50 percent at the airline’s Technical Operations Center (TOC). For its efforts to date, Delta received The Fox McCarthy Water Wise Award and recognition from the Georgia Association of Water Professionals;
- The incorporation of more than 600 zero-emission, electric vehicles and ground support equipment into the airline’s fleet. Significant reductions in emissions have been achieved by converting internal combustion engines to zero-emission electric units; and,
- Promoting a next generation Air Traffic Control (ATC) system – both in Europe and in the United States – that affords more direct aircraft routing and subsequently results in the reduction of carbon emissions associated with air travel.
Delta’s partnership with The Conservation Fund is the latest addition to Delta’s Force for Global Good, a program that unites Delta employees and customers in philanthropic and social responsibility efforts throughout the world. The program leverages Delta’s global network of employees who volunteer, as well as assets of The Delta Foundation, Delta’s charitable organization supporting communities where Delta customers and employees live and work worldwide. The Conservation Fund is Delta’s Force for Global Good’s second partner. Delta launched the campaign last December in partnership with Habitat for Humanity International (HFHI) with the airline’s first international build in the township of Katlehong in Johannesburg, South Africa. In April, Delta employees took part in a two-day build in Brooklyn, New York and this month, Delta employees are taking part in a build in Ghana. Delta’s Force for Global good is also planning a build in India later this year.
Delta Air Lines offers customers service to more destinations than any global airline with Delta and Delta Connection carrier service to 311 destinations in 52 countries. With more than 60 new international routes added in the last year, Delta is adding international flights at a faster rate than any other major U.S. airline and is a leader across the Atlantic with flights to 32 trans-Atlantic destinations. To Latin America and the Caribbean, Delta offers more than 600 weekly flights to 58 destinations. Delta's marketing alliances also allow customers to earn and redeem SkyMiles on nearly 15,000 flights offered by SkyTeam and other partners. Delta is a founding member of SkyTeam, a global airline alliance that provides customers with extensive worldwide destinations, flights and services. Including its SkyTeam and worldwide codeshare partners, Delta offers flights to 462 worldwide destinations in 98 countries. Customers can check in for flights, print boarding passes and check flight status at delta.com.
The Conservation Fund is The United States’ foremost environmental nonprofit dedicated to protecting America’s land and water legacy for current and future generations. Since its founding in 1985, the Fund has helped its partners safeguard wildlife habitat, working landscapes, community green space and historic sites totaling more than 5.5 million acres nationwide using a balanced approach that integrates environmental protection and economic development. With 1 percent fundraising costs and 96 percent program allocation, The Fund is recognized as the nation’s top-rated environmental nonprofit by both the American Institute of Philanthropy and Charity Navigator.
Since 2000, The Conservation Fund, though its Climate Change Program and Go Zero,SM, has restored nearly 30,000 acres and planted 9 million trees that will capture an estimated 13.5 million tons of carbon dioxide equivalent from the atmosphere. For more information, visit www.conservationfund.org and www.gocarbonzero.org.