Flying has gone to new heights as the much anticipated shift to reducing plastic on flights has been realised in the world’s first zero-waste flight. The inaugural eco flight was run by the Australian airline Qantas as they flew between Sydney and Adelaide.
Teaming up with BioPak, a packaging company that makes fully compostable products from plants using renewable materials that are responsibly sourced, Qantas replaced all the usual single-use plastic and food package waste on board to save the planet and pave the way for a new type of flying.
Coffee stirrers were made of wood, the cups made from BioPak’s special plant-based waste, and food containers and cutlery were either reusable, recyclable or compostable. Almost nothing went to landfill! This is all that was left…
“This is the most ambitious waste reduction target of any major airline globally, and we are truly excited to be at the forefront in providing state-of-the-art, eco-friendly products that solve the impending issue of single-use plastics,” says BioPak CEO Gary Smith.
“Innovation is at the heart of what we do. For more than a decade we have been working with companies across Australia and NZ to provide a viable solution to our current waste crisis, and it is wonderful to see Qantas Group join our ever-expanding network.”
This is part of Qantas’ plan to cut 100 million single-use plastics by end-2020 and eliminate 75% of the airline’s waste by the end of 2021.
While the flight was only two hours, starting small with domestic flights seems to be the key to success so the staff can monitor waste and what works and what doesn’t. Fingers crossed we’ll one day soon see low or zero-waste flights everywhere. Air New Zealand has also pledged to stop using single-use plastics on their flights. Watch this space!