Southwest Airlines (NYSE: LUV) announced it’s testing a "green plane," which includes green materials.
Southwest said the initiatives, when combined, equate to a weight savings of almost five pounds per seat, saving fuel and reducing emissions, while also reducing waste.
Green products include recycled carpet by InterfaceFLOR Carpet (Nasdaq: IFSIA) and lighter, more durable seat covers made of synthetic leather alternatives.
"As we look to the future, we know climate change remains of vital importance to our industry, our Company, and our Customers, so Southwest works hard every day in every area to be a responsible steward of the environment," says CEO Gary Kelly.
Southwest also announced the kickoff of a more robust onboard recycling program – a co-mingled system that will allow the airline to capture more recyclable material and divert it from the waste stream. This 18-month process involved team work from all areas of the Company to implement the program on the ground at its Provisioning Bases and re-working of waste collection procedures in the cabin.
"The initiative by the Southwest Airlines Green Team, Facilities Maintenance, Inflight Department, and Provisioning Department was a truly heroic effort; when you serve nearly 68 cities there are often 68 different ways to implement a program," Kelly says. "We appreciate the hard work of our recycling vendor, Republic Services, and we are excited to take a very effective recycling program and make it even better."