HomeCarbon CreditsBritish Airways Gives Flyers Option to Buy Carbon Credits

British Airways Gives Flyers Option to Buy Carbon Credits

British Airways introduced an option to all passengers who want to offset their flight emissions by buying carbon credits from a 3rd-party company.

British Airways added CO2 removal to its menu of carbon offsetting options via its upgraded climate platform, CO2llaborate. It allows passengers to tackle their carbon emissions when flying.

Cutting Carbon Emissions

The major UK airline already offsets the carbon footprint on all its flights within the country. The new initiative is part of the airline’s plan to reduce carbon emissions by 50% by 2050.

Not only does this give flyers a chance to calculate and address their flight emissions, but they can now buy carbon removal credits directly from their onboard aircraft seat.

Director of sustainability, Carrie Harris said:

“In 2019, when we committed to achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2050, we identified that a vital way to meet this goal would be by using carbon removals and we currently expect that these could contribute up to a third of our total action.”

The airline has already made the removal credits available to customers through its website and onboard flights.

British Airways’ move came days after it revealed its plans to buy 10 more aircraft from Boeing and Airbus. But some critics say that taking more flights can only worsen climate change.

Still, the airline company maintains that it’s taking actions to reduce its carbon emissions and cut its reliance on fossil fuels. These include improving operational efficiency, investing in more fuel-efficient aircraft, and scaling up the availability of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF).

Now the airline seeks to help hasten the scale-up of carbon removals solutions. And so, it now allows passengers to choose between a combination of SAF and either carbon offsets or carbon removals as a means of slashing their CO2 footprint.

CO2llaborate: Carbon Offsets & SAF vs. Carbon Removals & SAF

Carbon offsets come from projects that remove, avoid, or reduce emissions. On the other hand, carbon removals refer to projects that remove carbon.

In other words, when flyers choose carbon removals, they’re supporting projects (e.g., nature-based solutions or technologies) that withdraw carbon from the air and then store the carbon for the medium to long term. But if they pick carbon offsetting by buying carbon credits, they may be supporting a project that removes or reduces or avoids carbon.

British Airways’ flight emission calculation tool uses a slider that selects the amount of SAF and carbon removals, or SAF and carbon offsets. Flyers are also given a direct link where to buy carbon credits.

british airways co2llaborate platform

Here’s a quick overview of the airline’s process to show the difference between these two options, with an example of a flight. It’s a round trip between London and India.

A flyer can choose the most common ratio of 10% SAF and 90% carbon removals.

london to india CO2 removal 90%

By comparison, going for more SAF results in a higher price.

london to india CO2 removal 50%

Likewise, flyers can set any desired ratio of SAF to carbon offsets. Again, more SAF ratio will bring the total price higher. But overall, carbon offsets remain cheaper than carbon removals.

carbon offsets 90%

carbon offsets 50%

British Airways’ new carbon removal program will initially be available for flights from London Heathrow Airport to New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Miami, Hong Kong and Mumbai.

British Airways and Carbon Removal

Flyers can opt for a blend of two independently certified carbon removal projects on the CO2llaborate platform:

  1. The Blue Carbon Mangrove Project – reforestation and revegetation of about 225,000 hectares of degraded tidal wetlands in Pakistan’s Indus Delta.
  2. The Freres Biochar Project – based in Oregon, ensuring that the company’s biomass power production plant produce biochar (charcoal-like material that locks away carbon)

More CO2 removal projects will be added. The carbon offsetting option allows passengers to offset personal emissions by planting trees on their behalf in Brazil’s rainforests.

The new carbon removal program is available to all British Airways customers who fly on a long-haul route. It can be from any airport in Europe to any airport outside the continent.

Most Popular

Brazil’s Bill Will Allow Loggers to Earn $24M from Carbon Credits

Brazil’s Congress passed a bill that will make carbon credits available to private companies with forest concessions, serving a first step in regulating the...

Global Renewable Energy to Break Records in 2023, IEA Says

Global additions of renewable power capacity will increase by a third this year, says the International Energy Agency (IEA). In the IEA's 2023 Renewable Energy...

Equatic Reveals First-of-a-Kind Ocean CO2 Removal Tech, Inks Deal with Boeing

Ocean carbon removal startup Equatic launches breakthrough low-cost, gigaton-scale climate technology and signs a pre-purchase deal with Boeing. L.A.-based Equatic is an UCLA Samueli School...

Lithium-Ion Wars: US Battery Imports Soar by 66%, Setting New Record as Domestic Production Ramps Up

According to S&P Global, in the first quarter of 2023, US imports of lithium-ion batteries surged by nearly 66% from the previous year, reaching...

What are the Effects of Methane Emissions and Why Should We Care?

What are the effects of methane emissions? That’s the multi-million dollar question in the world’s battle over global warming as methane was often overlooked...

Carbon Credits and the Future of Sustainable Business: Exploring Best Practices

The trading of carbon credits can help entities and the world meet their climate goals by cutting carbon emissions and practicing sustainable business. While...

Revolutionizing Textile Recycling with HTC

A Virginia-based startup, Circ, has developed a unique hydrothermal processing technology for recycling blended textiles, like polyester-cotton blends. With fast fashion's emissions and environmental...

Carbon Credits and the Sustainable Development Goals: Aligning Climate Action with Global Priorities

Carbon credits from climate actions represent a crucial part of a strategy to mitigate climate change while supporting the global priorities on advancing sustainable...