American Airlines commits to “science-based targets” to reduce emissions

The airline has also signed up to the Business Ambition for 1.5°C campaign and Race to Zero  

The world’s largest operator, American Airlines announced that it has committed to set a science-based target to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2035 which will support its ambition to achieve net-zero by 2050. 

The airline is the first to begin the validation process with the science-based targets initiative (SBTi), a collaboration between Customer Data Platform (CDP), the United Nations Global Compact, World Resources Institute (WRI) and the Worldwide Fund for Nature (WWF). This means American will develop a 2035 emissions reduction target that will be reviewed by the SBTi to confirm its consistency with the latest climate science, according to the carrier. 

American Airlines
Photo American Airlines

 Doug Parker, chairman and CEO of American Airlines, said: “We are building American Airlines to thrive forever, which is why we set an ambitious goal to reach net-zero emissions by 2050. Now, we’re committing to set a science-based target for 2035 because the seriousness of the climate challenge demands it. We’ve already laid a strong foundation by prioritising near-term solutions to reduce our emissions, like renewing our fleet with more fuel-efficient aircraft. Looking forward, we believe we have an obligation to our customers, team members, shareholders and the communities we serve to focus and accelerate our transition to operating a low-carbon airline.” 

By committing to set a science-based target, American becomes a signatory to the Business Ambition for 1.5°C campaign and joins Race to Zero, a global campaign backed by the United Nations that aims to rally support for a zero-carbon economy from businesses, cities, investors and other non-state actors. 

Paul Simpson, CEO of CDP, said: “In order to limit the catastrophic impacts of climate change, we must ensure warming does not exceed 1.5°C. The ambition is high but it’s achievable and science-based targets give companies a roadmap for getting there. Corporations worldwide have an unprecedented opportunity to be at the very forefront of the transition to a net-zero economy, and there is no time to lose.” 

American plans to reach net-zero emissions by 2050 based on a reduction strategy including fleet renewal, sustainable aviation fuel and operational improvements.