Singapore

SIA going green in and out of the air

Plastic is out and paper straws and reusable cups are in for Singapore Airlines as it seeks to shift to more sustainable practices, both in and outside the aircraft.

In a push to go green, Singapore Airlines has completely swopped out single-use plastics, for both the "swizzle stick" (drink stirrer) and straws, replacing them with bamboo and paper substitutes respectively.

The paper cups that pilots traditionally get their drinks in have also been switched to reusable ones to cut down on wastage.

The moves are just one part of the national carrier's push to increase sustainability across its operations and lower its carbon footprint against a backdrop of worsening and unpredictable climate change.

Even the in-flight catering gets a rethink in the form of the "farm-to-plane" concept. Locally sourced food is prepared and delivered to the plane where it is, reducing the need for transportation of that food to the aircraft from elsewhere.

To save on utilities, some 18 per cent of electricity for SIA Group's head office and training centres will be generated by solar panels, while rainwater will make up 12 per cent of water consumption.

The company's eco- digester also means food waste can be disposed of on-site, saving the need for it to be transported elsewhere for disposal.

Singapore Airlines chief executive Goh Choon Phong unveiled the sustainability initiatives at the company's results briefing on Tuesday.

Emissions make up the bulk of an airline's carbon footprint and buying new, more fuel-efficient aircraft is the most immediate and effective way to reduce those emissions, said Mr Goh.

Environment