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Japan Airlines Jumps on Carbon Offset Bandwagon

jal-logo.jpgOn February 3rd, Japanese airline JAL Group will start offering a carbon offset program (pdf) for passengers to voluntarily offset the CO2 gases generated by their flights.

The program will be run through Recycle One, the Japanese agency of the CarbonNeutral Company.

Passengers visit Recycle One’s micro-site via a link on the JAL website. There, they use the C02 emissions calculator to find the total estimated amount of CO2 emitted from their journey.

Factors included in the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) formula include distance of travel, aircraft type, fuel burn, passenger load factors, and passenger to cargo ratios.

By buying credits to offset 50%, 100%, or alternatively, as much as is possible for a fixed price of 1,000 Japanese yen (about US$11), passengers are supporting one of the ten sustainable development projects JAL offers, most of which involve wind power generation.

On January 30th, Japan Airlines will conduct an experimental jet flight powered by a sustainable biofuel refined from the energy crop, camelina.

Other airlines that have introduced carbon offset programs include: Continental, SAS, British Airways, Air Canada, Qantas, JetStar, Virgin Atlantic, and Virgin America.

Airports are getting into the act too – SFO announced a carbon offset plan last month.

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