Etihad Airways has celebrated the start of Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week 2020 with an ‘eco-flight’ from Abu Dhabi to Brussels.
Flight EY 57 departed at 02:20 this morning (January 13) and was operated by a Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft – the most efficient aircraft in Etihad Airways’ fleet, which consumes at least 15 per cent less fuel than any aircraft type previously flown by the airline.
The aircraft followed an optimised flight route facilitated by the European airspace navigation service provider, Eurocontrol, to reduce fuel consumption and carbon emissions.
Meanwhile, a handful of other initiatives were undertaken before, during and after the flight to shed light on incremental opportunities to reduce the airline’s impact on the environment.
Group CEO, Etihad Aviation Group, Tony Douglas remarked on the significance of the ‘eco flight’: “Sustainable practice is a critical and continuing challenge for the air transport industry, which is striving to reduce carbon emissions and waste, while meeting soaring demand for air travel. It is also a key priority for the emirate, in which Etihad is a critical driver of both social and economic development.
“This year’s national theme of the UAE is ‘2020: Towards the next 50’. Etihad is committed to working continuously with a range of partners as part of a broader national focus on environmental sustainability,” he concluded.
In order to reduce its impact on the environment, Etihad Airways continues to invest in the latest generation, most fuel-efficient aircraft, bolstering its fleet of Boeing 787 Dreamliners and preparing to induct three new types: the wide-bodied Airbus 350-1000 and Boeing 777-9, and the narrow-bodied Airbus A321neo.
Adding to this, the carrier has joined forces with First Abu Dhabi Bank and Abu Dhabi Global Markets to become the first airline to secure commercial funding conditional upon compliance with the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations.
Other initiatives undertaken by the airline to reduce its impact on the environment include the Etihad Greenliner Programme, through which the carrier’s entire fleet of Boeing 787s will be used as flying testbeds for a range of sustainability initiatives; partnerships with entities such as Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) and Tadweer (Abu Dhabi Waste Management Centre) on future fuel initiatives; a significant reduction in the use of single-use plastics; plus much more.