Mango commits to going green

2012-09-20 11:56

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Low cost airline Mango launches ten year commitment to be first African carbon neutral airline

Low cost airline Mango intends to be the first African carrier to achieve a significant measure of carbon neutrality within a decade. The airline today announced its commitment to sustainable growth and a pledge to reduce its emissions within a robust framework of initiatives that should see Mango achieve its goal. The airline plans to engage employees, suppliers, Guests and other role players within its value chain to encourage sustainability.

“Airlines burn fuel, and contribute approximately 2% of global greenhouse gas emissions,” says Mango CEO Nico Bezuidenhout.

"It is an immovable fact and as a sector that drives economic growth across markets, ergo sustainability within the industry and assuming a leadership position becomes key. Despite the fact that on-going economic pressures in aviation may be cause for losing focus, Mango has elected to formally commit itself to sustainability and recognising its responsibility toward managing and mitigating its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.”

The airline is preparing for an audit process whereby every aspect of flight operations will be measured for its carbon footprint.

“This means that we will commence measurement of our GHG emissions directly and indirectly related to our primary business activity, air transportation,” says Bezuidenhout.

This will be determined, monitored and reported annually in line with the GHG Protocol / ISO14064 and reported in terms of Scope 1 - direct emissions  including fuel burn as a consequence of flight operations, Scope 2 - indirect emissions such as electricity use, and Scope 3 – indirect emissions from third party operations such as waste management, and contractor activities.

Mango will initially seek to generate voluntary carbon credits. “Once we have a baseline our mitigation strategy will be aligned to Mango’s current starting-block initiatives such as the construction of sustainable vegetable gardens in communities, recycling and operational efficiencies. Our aim is sustainable development that will, where possible, further align with national developmental goals and include added benefits of job creation and skills development among others,” says Bezuidenhout, adding that ultimately solutions should be viable and add sustainable economic value.

The airline has already drafted a short term plan that will realise immediate reductions against Scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions to be implemented in parallel with the audit process, ultimately forming part of a larger sustainability management strategy.

The airline is partnering with the South African Mango Grower’s Association and Subtropical Fruit Association to initiate a 5 year agricultural development and offset programme that will see micro-entrepreneur skill development, botany initiatives to improve crops such as topping greater yielding variants, mitigating fossil fuel energy dependency, educational initiatives through bursaries and 41 000 hectares of agricultural land earmarked for emission reduction activities.

Over the next 18 months Mango also plans to:

1.    Rollout a fuel efficiency programme that will include aircraft weight reduction. Mango has already removed excess weight from its fleet (unused equipment such as ashtrays, ovens, less water carried etc).  Winglets already fitted to its aircraft contribute to fuel savings of up to 4%. Further plans are afoot to include seat replacement across Mango’s fleet and flight optimisation to lessen consumption and emissions.
2.    Retrofit all Mango offices and seek out a partner to offer employees and value chain role players’ residential retro-fitting and energy solutions such as LED lighting, energy and water efficient showerheads and geyser timers among others.
3.    Embark on additional Guest education programmes through its owned media channels to educate and share information in terms of sustainability, touching on aspects as diverse as conservation, energy use reduction, and greener living options among others.
4.    Make available staff educational programmes on energy efficiency opportunities both at home and at the workplace.
5.    Convene a value -chain stakeholder forum within the Mango milieu, to initiate up and down stream implementation of sustainability and emission reduction initiatives.
6.    Implement a Voluntary Emission Offset programme for Guests through all its booking channels.

Says Bezuidenhout: “Mango is determined to contribute substantially to the national effort towards a sustainable future, by reducing emissions, combating climate change and conserving our natural heritage to the benefit of all South Africans, generation now and generation next.”

Read more on:    mango  |  travel south africa

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