Panama's Copa Airlines signs agreement with government to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions
Copa Airlines' Boeing 737-800 (photo: Boeing)
Sat 6 Sept 2008 – Panama’s Copa Airlines has signed a partnership agreement with the Panamanian Environmental Protection Agency (ANAM) under which the carrier undertakes to comply with environmental regulations and voluntarily reduce and offset greenhouse gas emissions from its ground and air operations.
The agreement focuses on the development of a Copa Environmental Management and Mitigation Programme, which encompasses a company-wide culture of environmental awareness focused on sustainability. Components of the programme include the development of a recycling plan throughout the airline’s daily operations, as well as the voluntary reduction and offsetting of greenhouse gas emissions. In addition, studies will be conducted to promote cleaner production and sustainable resource use.
Panama’s Minister of Environmental Conservation and Related Affairs, and General Administrator for ANAM, Ligia Castro de Doens, said the public-private alliance was a model for the aviation industry.
Pedro Heilbron, CEO of Copa Airlines, said the agreement highlighted the importance of promoting environmental conservation programmes in Panama through initiatives that reduce pollution and benefit the social and economic well-being of the country and the region.
ANAM promotes programmes that result in overall reductions of emissions into the atmosphere of pollutant compounds from all economic and social sectors, with special emphasis on air and land transportation.
Copa Airlines operates a young fleet of aircraft that comprises 26 Boeing 737-700 and -800 aircraft as well as 13 Embraer 190s. The airline claims it was the first Latin American carrier to operate 737s with blended winglets, which have led to a 3.5% saving in fuel consumption and emissions. Copa has also implemented more direct departure and arrival routes using RNAV satellite navigation, which has also resulted in reducing its environmental impact, as well as other measures to improve operational energy efficiency.