Portuguese charter airline Hi Fly has become the first operator to ditch single-use plastics on board flights. Following four “plastic-free” trial flights from a 10-hour Lisbon to Brazil journey carrying 700 passengers, the wet-lease carrier aims to make its entire fleet plastic-free by the end of 2019.
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We couldn't be prouder of being the first airline to perform a completely Single Use Plastic Free Flight. The first step to our ultimate goal to turn all our flights completely Single Use Plastic Free by the end of 2019. . . #TTOP #turnthetideonplastic #plasticfree #sustainability #togetherforabetterworld #mirpurifoundation #hifly #hiflyairline #airbus #airbusa340 #a340 #9HSUN #altoastral #wedidit
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Plastic cups, spoons, salt and pepper shakers, sick bags, wraps for bedding, dishes, individual butter pots, soft drink bottles and toothbrushes will be replaced by biodegradable materials – recycled paper packaging and bamboo cutlery – that can be readily composted after flights. Cutting out 350kg (about 771.6lb) of plastic on the probationary flights, the airline’s mission follows a bold and promising statement to ensure that airlines’ corporate practices match their wider responsibilities to the planet.
“Over 100,000 flights take off each day around the world and last year, commercial aircraft carried nearly four billion passengers,” Hi Fly president Paulo Mirpuri said. “This number is expected to double again in less than 20 years. So, the potential to make a difference here is clearly enormous.”
The A380 fleet performs more than 300 commercial flights a day. Now in its 12th year of commercial service, Hi Fly has been an avid proponent of sustainability while highlighting the damage caused by plastic pollution. With campaigns and initiatives aimed at raising awareness of marine conservation and plastic pollution, its 2017 campaign made headlines at the Volvo Ocean Race in support of the United Nations “Clean Seas” campaign by sponsoring the “Turn The Tide on Plastic” yacht at the race, while painting one of its A330s with the same message. The following year saw “Save the Coral Reefs” illuminated on its new Airbus A380 after pledging to become a plastic-free enterprise.
Awareness of the impact of plastic pollution hit an all-time high last year that saw many initiatives committed to ban single-use plastic. In Hong Kong, new low waste companies such as the Green Platters catering company are committed to fusing social and environmental sustainability with artfully arranged grazing platters. The government has also launched free reusable tableware rentals for event organisers in a bid to combat plastic waste and single-use disposables.
This article originally appeared on Green Queen .