Qantas has embarked on a Herculean mission to cut out 100 million plastic items which contribute to non-biodegradable waste generated from planes each year. To pave the way for more eco-friendly flights, Qantas has conducted a trial of the first-ever zero garbage flight.
At present, the total waste generated by the airlines is equivalent to 80 full Boeing 747 jumbos; naturally, the need of the hour is to come up with ways of reducing landfill waste. The amount of waste generated each day is staggering and steps are accordingly being taken by Qantas to eliminate waste and consequently improve their environmental footprint.
On Wednesday, passengers on the flight from Sydney to Adelaide were in for a pleasant surprise. They were served food in packaging made entirely from biodegradable materials like crop starch, sugar cane et cetera.
The formula is simple. Once used, these biodegradable items will be converted to compost and will then be used as manure in gardens around the country. Qantas also has a policy in place for any non-biodegradable waste, like plastic bottles. Any such plastic waste will be recycled.
More importantly, the airline will not be charging their customers for this switch to biodegradable items. Spokespersons from Qantas said that this is an investment they're prepared to make and that customers will not be charged extra as this will be beneficial in the long run.
In fact, a lot of people praised Qantas on social media. While some applauded their efforts, some stated that others must also follow their example.
Let's hope this @Qantas waste reduction becomes the norm. Not surprised the cabin crew have led it. I've seen many of them trying to reduce waste over the last couple of years. https://t.co/SaOOiCHYQu
— Craig Reucassel (@craigreucassel) May 8, 2019
My favourite photo from today’s world-first waste free @Qantas flight is also the least glamorous... the usual landfill waste from a SYD-ADL service vs the small bag (forefront) from today’s flight (and even that waste will be re-used as an alternative fuel source in a kiln) pic.twitter.com/3rYnwKTUGC
— Andrew Parker (@ajamesparker) May 8, 2019
According to The Sydney Morning Herald, the passengers had not been notified prior to boarding the flight. As Andre Davis, CEO of Qantas, said, this marks a significant day for aviation and it can only be hoped that other airlines will be following suit.