July 14, 2024

Cathay commits to sustainability

The Cathay Pacific Group has stressed its commitment to sustainable development with the launch of a new Sustainable Development Report.

Augustus Tang, Cathay Pacific chief executive officer, says: “At the time of preparing this report, a public health emergency has rocked the global economy. It feels more important than ever to foster positivity, to protect our people, to strengthen our communities and to confront the major challenges we face. We are very determined to play our part in this hugely important undertaking; one which requires us to be financially successful but in a socially and environmentally responsible manner. Our commitment to developing sustainably with transparency and accountability is undiminished.”

Among highlights of the report is a new single-use plastic reduction target: to reduce the group’s single-use plastic (SUP) footprint by 50% by the end of 2022, removing nearly 200 million pieces of SUP from its operations annually. In 2019, the group removed more than 32 million pieces of SUP from its annual operations. It is exploring closed-loop opportunities and alternative materials to replace other single-use plastic items.

As part of its resource management, Cathay flights recycled nearly 2,500 tonnes of waste and donated 563 tonnes of surplus food to charities. The carpets in its aircraft are made from regenerated nylon waste materials and it also recycles or repurposes around 90% of all aircraft retired.

The airline has introduced new efficiency initiatives, adding six new, more fuel-efficient Airbus A350s to the fleet and committing to buy 1.1 million tonnes of Sustainable Aviation Fuel over 10 years. It has achieved a 27% cumulative improvement in fuel efficiency since 1998.

In 2019, a total of 33,922 tonnes of carbon emission produced by the airline’s operations were offset by a voluntary carbon offset programme, Fly Greener. Some 55,000 tonnes of carbon has been offset through this scheme.

The airline also aims to lead the way in sustainable food ingredients using OmniPork – a plant-based protein – in its inflight menu and Beyond Meat as a plant-based alternative for recipes in the lounges.