/ Traveling the Green Way

Southwest Airlines Green Power Purchase

It’s really hard to fly green. An airline company can offset, use recycled packaging for goods, try to go paper-free more often, and so on, but all in all, flying is just not very earth friendly. Of course in relation to cars the airlines are better, but only because more people fly than drive. Also, if you’re going to choose an airline, you should choose one that’s taking steps to attempt to green their operations.

Southwest Airlines is one airline doing a little something to green up so if you’re looking to green your travel plans, they may be a good choice. Like all airlines, they have a long way to go before they can be recognized as “green” but they’re taking steps, and that’s a good deal.

Getting on board with green power:

Southwest Airlines‘ Dallas and Houston operations were recently recognized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for its leading Green power purchase and for its support and participation in the Agency’s Fortune 500 Green Power Challenge.

Southwest Airlines’ Dallas and Houston operations are purchasing nearly 16 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) of Green power – that’s enough to meet 30 percent of the factilities’ purchased electricity use (yeah, it’s only 30% but it’s a start). They’re buying renewable energy certificates (REC) from Reliant Energy.

The company is purchasing Green power in support of EPA’s Fortune 500 Green Power Challenge. This challenge is the EPA challenging Fortune 500 Corporations to collectively exceed 10 billion kilowatt-hours Green power purchasing by year end 2009.

Southwest Airlines (Dallas & Houston Operations) currently ranks No. 32 on EPA’s Fortune 500 List – an excellent list in some ways – although NOT the only reason to consider a company green by any means it’s again, better to be on the list then not.

Later we’ll look at some other green issues that Southwest is focusing on.

[image via EPA]

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