BA vows to ditch 250 million in-flight plastic items this year

The airline has pledged to get rid of 700 tonnes of single-use plastic from flights by the end of 2020

Big Zero Report 2022

British Airways today announced a new target to remove more than 700 tonnes of single-use plastic on board its flights in 2020.

It says that’s 250 million individual bits of plastic, equivalent to more than 30,000 suitcases full. To mark the pledge they have unveiled a giant suitcase made from a thousand pieces of waste plastic, including 160 spoons, more than a dozen plastic stirrers, drinks lids, plastic wrap, bubble wrap, catering dishes and covers and bottles.

The airline is replacing packaging and wrapping for items such as blankets and headsets with sustainable alternatives. It is also seeking reusable or recyclable substitutes for cutlery, tumblers, cups and toothpicks.

Kate Tanner, British Airways’ Customer Experience Manager said: “We’ve spent a long time researching how to make sustainable changes without causing environmental impact elsewhere.

“Some potential replacement options may be heavier, which would then have an impact on the weight of the aircraft and therefore on our emissions, so we must ensure we are making the right choices on all replacements.”

BA has already rolled out initiatives to remove 25 million individual items of single-use plastic on board each year and changes they have already made include bamboo drink stirrers and water bottles made from 50% recycled plastic.

The sculpture is currently on display at British Airways’ Headquarters near Heathrow.

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