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Earth Day 2022

Friday 22 April marks Earth Day; a global celebration of support for environmental protection. At Cathay Pacific, we take sustainability seriously. We were one of the first airlines to publish an environmental report 26 years ago, first in Asia to launch a carbon offsetting scheme 15 years ago, first to make an equity investment in a sustainable aviation fuel manufacturer, 8 years ago, and this Earth Day we proudly launch Asia's first major Corporate Sustainable Aviation Fuel Programme. But we’re not stopping there.

Over the past few years, we’ve made three bold market-leading pledges, making us greener than ever before.

We have committed to:


Remove 200 million pieces of single-use plastic, by the end of 2022.

Use 10% of sustainable aviation fuel as part of our total fuel usage by 2030. 

Be carbon net-zero by 2050.

Here's how we're going to do it:

Asia's first major Corporate Sustainable Aviation Fuel Programme

Our Corporate SAF Programme gives customers an opportunity to reduce carbon emissions from both business travel and air freight. With the launch of this programme, for the very first time we can use SAF at Hong Kong International Airport.

Discover more >

Reduce single-use plastic on-board

Since the 1950s, 8.3 billion tonnes of plastic have been produced; and just 21 percent has been recycled or incinerated. The rest has ended up in landfills and the ocean, wreaking havoc on the ecosystem.

We recognise the impact single-use plastic has on our environment; and in 2021, we made the pledge to halve our single-use plastic usage by the end of 2022.

Whilst we have removed nearly 200 million individual items thus far - or 43 million pieces in 2019/2020 alone - our sustainability journey in fact began more than 20 years ago in Economy Class, when we began using rotatable plastic cutlery that was washed, sterilised and reused many times.

In First and Business Class, our pillowcases and duvet covers are delivered in reusable bags. And did you know, the cabin carpets on our A350s are made from recycled fishnet, and our Economy Class blankets are made from recycled plastic bottles?

Carbon offsetting with Fly Greener

We were the first Asian airline to launch a carbon offsetting scheme, Fly Greener, back in 2007. Since then, more than 300,000 tonnes of CO2 has been offset, which equates to the annual carbon emissions of more than 63,000 households in the United Kingdom.

Your carbon offset contributions directly fund independently reviewed and Gold Standard accredited projects that not only aim to reduce carbon emissions, but also improve the quality of living in developing countries.

Fly Greener contributions have funded a project in India, which distributed biodigesters across the country to replace fuelwood grid electricity and other fossil fuels. These units can be used to produce cooking gas, heat, or even electricity on the larger scale.

Households save on fuel costs, and the villages have cleaner air; and your travel is carbon net-zero.

Visit to learn more.

Creating a modern fuel-efficient fleet

In recent years, every new aircraft has been designed with at least 25% improvement on fuel efficiency, when compared to a similar model in the previous generation. While today’s aircraft are twice as fuel efficient as they were 50 years ago, fossil fuel remains the only viable source of power for aircraft.

As the first Asian airline to commit to being carbon net-zero by 2050, we have invested heavily in a new fleet. This has helped us achieve a 7.7% improvement by traffic carried in 2020, and more impressively, over 32.5% since 1998 (both figures compared to 2021).

Since 2016, we have introduced 43 brand new Airbus A350s into our fleet, four all-new A321neos. With yet more A350s joining our fleet, and 21 more Boeing 777-9s on the horizon, our average fleet age is only going to get lower yet.

Investing in sustainable aviation fuel

As the first airline to make an equity investment in Fulcrum Bioenergy – a sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) manufacturer in 2016, we are now in a position to commit to using 10% SAF as part of our total fuel consumption.

Fulcrum Bioenergy uses household waste as a feedstock and turn them into SAF. Not only is the resulting transportation fuel low in carbon, the process also helps to divert a large volume of waste from entering landfills, thus reduces greenhouse gas emissions by more than 100 percent on a lifecycle basis.

In 2016, Cathay Pacific’s first Airbus A350-900 performed the world’s longest flight using a blend of SAF at the time, flying from Toulouse to Hong Kong. All of our new aircraft are delivered with a blend of SAF, since 2016, more than 200 tonnes of SAF have been used for delivery flights.

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