Alaska Airlines To Purchase Sustainable Biofuels For Hawaii Flights

Part of going green is making sure that you support businesses that utilize sustainable, responsible practices, even if doing so requires higher costs than sticking with conventional methods for delivering products and services.

If you're traveling this summer and wondering which airline is greenest, you may want to check out Alaska Airlines. The company announced on July 24 that it had reached an agreement with Hawai`i BioEnergy to purchase 10 million gallons of biofuel a year to power its jets. The agreement will go into effect as soon as 2018, when Hawai'i BioEnergy receives regulatory approval to increase its production to meet this new demand.

"Alaska Airlines shares our goals of environmental responsibility and our commitment to sustainable, local energy production," Joel Matsunaga, executive vice president and chief operating officer of Hawai`i BioEnergy, said in a news release. "The development and commercialization of local, renewable energy is of critical importance to Hawaii, given the state imports 95 percent of its energy needs.

Alaska Airlines has been at the forefront of promoting green flying through the use of renewable energy sources such as biofuel. The company uses a 20 percent blend of biofuel, which is typically made from wood or used cooking oil, on 75 daily flights. Doing so reduces the carbon footprint of their airplanes. They also do this at considerable expense, as biofuels cost roughly six times as much as conventional jet fuel.

According to the press release, Alaska Airlines has shrunk their carbon emissions by 30 percent since 2011.

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