SWISS and Lufthansa provide customers with a further platform for helping to protect the environment

17 September 2007

Both airlines team up with Swiss non-profit organisation “myclimate” to offer voluntary carbon offset option. SWISS customers can now choose to offset the carbon dioxide emissions caused by their air travel, by calculating these when booking online at SWISS.COM and paying a corresponding amount to the Swiss-based “myclimate” foundation.

SWISS now offers its customers a simple option for voluntarily offsetting the carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions caused each time they travel, by paying a corresponding amount along with their air fare. The additional amount is paid to the reputed Swiss-based myclimate foundation, SWISS’s partner in providing the new option, which will invest it in climate protection projects elsewhere that have been selected by SWISS and meet the highest quality standards. In doing so, the foundation ensures that the investment will save the same amount of CO2 emissions as are generated by the customer’s air travel.

The projects selected by SWISS for its customers’ carbon offset amounts comply with internationally-agreed criteria and have been awarded the Gold Standard, currently the highest seal of approval for carbon offset undertakings. The Gold Standard sets criteria that have been devised by the WWF and other international environmental organisations, and guarantees that the projects concerned fulfil the highest sustainability criteria in both environmental and social terms.
Technological innovations reap their rewards“Acting responsibly towards the environment is an integral part of our corporate culture,” says SWISS CEO Christoph Franz. “And by offering our customers the option of contributing to specific climate protection projects, we’re adding a further dimension to our environmental endeavours.”

SWISS has been cutting its CO2 emissions since the company was formed. This has been achieved by various means, including reducing aircraft weight. SWISS is currently replacing all the conventional seats on its European Airbus fleet with new and lighter models made of carbon fibre. The high-tech seats are not only more comfortable; they also save weight and thus reduce fuel consumption and associated CO2 emissions. A weight saving of one kilo on each of its short-haul Airbus flights will lower SWISS’s annual CO2 emissions by 16 tonnes. So the new seats are an excellent investment in customer, economic and ecological terms.

World air transport currently accounts for 1.6% of global greenhouse gas emissions. But as a growth industry, aviation must continue to enhance its energy efficiency. SWISS already has one of the lowest fuel consumption levels of any airline: last year, the carrier consumed an average of 3.8 litres of kerosene for every 100 passenger-kilometres. This is a 16% improvement since 2002 alone.
Lufthansa, too, now offers its customers the option of contributing to specific climate protection projects, also in collaboration with myclimate.

SWISS passengers can voluntarily offset their CO2 emissions on the SWISS.COM website in just two easy clicks. They can also do so without booking a flight. An “emissions calculator” offers the customer a broad guideline on how much they might additionally pay, based on the fuel consumption data for the SWISS fleet; but the final decision on this carbon offset amount is left entirely to the customer. The new carbon offset option has no effect on SWISS ticket prices. For more details of the projects in which SWISS passengers’ carbon offset amounts are invested, visit swiss.myclimate.org. Further general information on SWISS’s environmental endeavours will be found at www.swiss.com.

The non-profit “myclimate – The Climate Protection Partnership” foundation was established in 2006 through the amalgamation of Federal Institute of Technology spinoff myclimate and the private CLiPP initiative, which had both been active in the climate protection field since 2002.