Qantas offers world’s first zero-waste flight

Qantas has carried out the world’s first flight to produce no landfill waste. This puts the Australian airline firmly on its path to cut 100 million single-use plastics by the end of 2020 and eliminate 75 per cent of its waste by the end of 2021.

The world’s first commercial flight to produce no landfill waste took to the skies last week. All inflight products on board Qantas flight QF739 from Sydney to Adelaide will be disposed of via compost, reuse or recycling.

According to the Australian airline, all single-use plastic items were substituted with sustainable alternatives such as meal containers made from sugar cane and cutlery made from crop starch. Some single-use plastic items, including individually packaged servings of milk, were removed altogether from the flight.

Customers used digital boarding passes and even electronic bag tags where possible.

The zero-waste flight is part of Qantas’ plan to cut 100 million single-use plastics by the end of 2020. Qantas and its discount airline subsidiary Jetstar will replace some 45 million plastic cups, 30 million cutlery sets, 21 million coffee cups and 4 million headrest covers with sustainable alternatives.

“We want to give customers the same level of service they currently enjoy, but without the amount of waste that comes with it,”  Qantas Domestic CEO Andrew David said in a press release. He added that the Sydney-Adelaide flight typically produces 150 tonnes of waste Adelaide.

Image credit Qantas

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