“We are thrilled that WestJet will be the first Canadian air carrier to operate a dedicated flight route using SAF,” said Angela Avery, WestJet Group Executive Vice-President and Chief People, Corporate and Sustainability Officer. “This is an integral step in decarbonizing Canada’s aviation sector and WestJet is committed to working alongside our partners to reduce our environmental footprint as we aim to drive greater awareness for the importance of a SAF ecosystem in Canada.”
Canada’s Minister of Transport, Omar Alghabra, also applauded WestJet’s announcement, saying it is “another important step towards reducing emissions in our aviation sector.” He added: “Our Government is committed to ensuring that air travel continues to connect Canadians, support our economy, trade and tourism, while also mitigating the environmental impact of aviation travel.”
As the first Canadian airline to significantly invest in SAF, WestJet purchased Neste MY Sustainable Aviation Fuel to fly 40 flights over three months from San Francisco International Airport (SFO) to Calgary International Airport (YYC). According to the airline, the immediate investment in SAF over the next three months will directly reduce greenhouse gas emissions on these routes by 186 tons, with the equivalent of more than 1,550 out of 5,300 guests onboard taking a carbon neutral flight enroute to Calgary.
“Air travel is critical to the Canadian economy and for connecting Canadians across our vast country and with the rest of the world,” added Avery. “With one of North America’s youngest fleets, as we look ahead we have the opportunity to make Canada a leader in SAF production, creating clean energy jobs and ensuring the critical service we provide is responsible and sustainable.”
WestJet hopes to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050. Earlier this year, WestJet announced a new partnership with Aero Design Labs to modify the airline’s 737-700 NG aircraft for greater reduced emissions and improved fuel efficiency. As the largest 737NG operator in Canada, it’s anticipated that the modifications will reduce overall fuel burn through drag reduction and lead to long-term cost savings and reduced carbon emissions on the 737-700 aircraft.
For more information go to www.westjet.com.
Main image: Lana van Marter, MGR of Renewable Aviation, Neste, Holly Monster, U.S. Consul General, Andy Gibbons, WestJet V.P., External Affairs, Gareth Lewis, WestJet, Dir., Sustainability & ESG, Sonya Savage, Minister of Environment & Protected Areas, Government of Alberta, Alexis von Hoensbroech, WestJet CEO, George Chahal, Member of Parliament, Calgary Skyview, Alberta, Angela Avery, WestJet Group E.V.P & Chief People, Corporate & Sustainability Officer and James Rajotte, Alberta’s Snr. Rep. to the U.S.