LAX Welcomes World's Most Eco-Friendly Commercial Flight as United Commits to LAX 'Eco-Hub- with Purchase of Biofuel

06/05/2019 04:15 PM

United and LAX demonstrate continuing commitment to a cleaner planet.
For Immediate Release
June 5, 2019

Frederick Badlissi

(424) 646-5260

(Los Angeles, CA) Today, World Environment Day, Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) welcomed United Airlines flight 310, the most eco-friendly commercial flight in aviation history. The arrival of this historic flight coincides with United’s commitment to purchase up to 10 million gallons of sustainable aviation biofuel at LAX.

The airplane, a Boeing 737-900ER in United's Eco-Skies livery, becomes the first to demonstrate the following key actions on a single commercial flight: use of sustainable aviation biofuel; zero cabin waste; carbon offsetting; and operational efficiencies including all-electric ground handling equipment. The “Flight for the Planet,” as United is calling it, departed from Chicago and landed at LAX, the company’s “eco-hub” for sustainable operations.

“LAX is proud to be United’s eco-hub for its most sustainable operations, highlighting our shared commitment to leading the industry in emerging sustainable aviation practices,” said Samantha Bricker, Deputy Executive Director, Environmental Programs Group, Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA). "Los Angeles World Airports is an international leader in airport sustainability, and partnerships like this one are leading the way to a greener future at our nation’s airports.”

The eco-hub designation comes in part from United’s recent commitment to continue buying and utilizing sustainable biofuel for all of its departing flights at LAX over the next two years. The use of biofuel, which is made from sustainable sourced agricultural waste feedstock, achieves a greater than 60% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions on a lifecycle basis compared to traditional jet fuel. United has pledged to reduce its carbon footprint by 50% by 2050.

"Investing in sustainable aviation biofuel is one of the most effective measures a commercial airline can take to reduce its impact on the environment," said Scott Kirby, President of United Airlines. "As leaders in this space, LAWA, United and World Energy are setting an example for the industry on how innovators can work together to bring our customers, colleagues and communities toward a more sustainable future."

United first used biofuel at LAX in 2016, when it began its purchase of up to 15 million gallons to use on all flights departing from LAX. That purchase made United the first airline in the world, and LAX the first airport in the world, to use biofuel for continuous commercial aircraft operations.

"Great companies lead in the face of great challenges," said Gene Gebolys, Chief Executive Officer, World Energy, which provides the biofuel used at LAX. "That is exactly what United is doing by acting now to reduce its carbon footprint through the use of innovative products like our renewable jet fuel. We are honored to renew our commitment to United to advance their efforts to drive change to a lower carbon future."

About Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)

LAX, the fourth-busiest airport in the world and second busiest in the United States, was named a top-10 U.S. airport by SKYTRAX. LAX served more than 87.5 million passengers in 2018 and offers an average of 700 daily nonstop flights to 109 cities in the U.S. and 1,281 weekly nonstop flights to 93 markets in 47 countries on 69 commercial airlines. LAX ranks 10th in the world in air cargo tonnage processed, with more than 2.4 million tons of air cargo. LAX handled 707,883 operations (landings and takeoffs) in 2018.  

LAX generated 620,600 jobs in Southern California, with labor income of $37.3 billion and economic output (business revenues) of more than $126.6 billion, according to an economic study based on 2014 operations. This activity added $6.2 billion to local and state revenues and $8.7 billion in federal tax revenues. The study also reported that LAX’s ongoing capital improvement program creates an additional 121,640 annual jobs with labor income of $7.6 billion and economic output of $20.3 billion; $966 million in state and local taxes; and $1.6 billion in federal tax revenues.


LAX was honored as having the “Best Overall Customer Service Program” by Airports Council International-North America; named the “Best Airport for Breastfeeding Moms” by Mamava; selected for the Top 10 “Best of the U.S.’s Big Airports” (Wall Street Journal) and “Most Pet-Friendly Airports in the U.S. (Mental Floss); named the second-most improved airport in the U.S. by JD Power; received an “Innovation Award” from the L.A. Better Business Challenge for its Central Utility Plant; and named  a “Business Leader in Air Quality” by the South Coast Air Quality Management District.

LAX is also the second-most popular airport in the world to appear on Instagram, according to LAX is part of a system of two Southern California airports – along with Van Nuys general aviation – that are owned and operated by Los Angeles World Airports, a proprietary department of the City of Los Angeles that receives no funding from the City’s general fund.   

As a covered entity under Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act, the City of Los Angeles does not discriminate on the basis of disability and, upon request, will provide reasonable accommodation to ensure equal access to its programs, services, and activities.  Alternative formats in large print, braille, audio, and other forms (if possible) will be provided upon request.

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