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  • Joe Breitfeller

LATAM Airlines Group On Track to Eliminate Most Single Use Plastic by the End of 2023

LATAM Airlines Group has today announced that they have reduced single-use plastics by 88 percent during the first half of 2023, delivering a reduction of 1,600 metric tons of plastic. The Group’s goal is to reduce all single-use plastic onboard by the end of this year.

LATAM Accelerates Initiative to Eliminate the Use of Single-Use Plastics Onboard - Courtesy LATAM Airlines Group

On Tuesday (July 25, 2023), LATAM Airlines Group announced that as part of their circular economy projects, they have managed to eliminate 88 percent of single-use plastic onboard during the first half of 2023. This represents a total reduction of 1,600 tons of plastic, the equivalent of 266 million plastic bags. The Group hopes to eliminate 100 percent of single-use plastic by the end of this year. The successful reduction was achieved by replacing single-use plastics with organic materials, such as paper for cups, bamboo for cutlery, sugar cane for lids, reusable pans and trays in Economy Class, and cloth bags in Business Class.

In Tuesday’s announcement, LATAM Airlines Group’s Experience Manager, Estela Espinoza, said,

“Our commitment is to eliminate single-use plastics by 2023 and to be zero waste to landfills by 2027. Two years ago, we decided to migrate from a linear model to a circular one, where waste becomes a resource with a new life. We will continue working on more initiatives that allow us to contribute to the environment.”

LATAM's Circular Economy Projects Also include the Use of Cloth Bags and Sustainable Amenity Kits in Business Class, as Well as the Repurposing of Uniforms and Other Textiles into New Products - Courtesy LATAM Airlines Group

The reduction of onboard single-use plastics has also been complemented by the Group’s ‘recycle your trip’ program which promotes the segregation of certain onboard waste to subsequently be recycled. The program is currently operating on LATAM’s domestic flights is Chile, Peru, Ecuador and Colombia, and may be implemented in Brazil in the near future. The Group is also continuing their ‘Second Flight’ program where airline uniforms and other textiles are upcycled and repurposed. South American artisans and entrepreneurs transform these fabrics into new products, including passport holders, luggage tags, wallets, keychains and more.

LATAM Airlines Group S.A. is the leading airline group in Latin America, offering service in five domestic markets (Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru) as well as international service within Latin America and to Europe, Oceania, the United States and the Caribbean. The airline will also resume service between São Paulo and Johannesburg in mid-2023. The Group operates a fleet of Boeing 767, 777, and 787s, as well as Airbus A319, A320, A320neo, A321 aircraft. LATAM Cargo Chile, LATAM Cargo Colombia and LATAM Cargo Brazil are the LATAM Airlines freight subsidiaries. In addition to passenger aircraft belly hold cargo capacity, the Group operates a fleet of 18 dedicated freighters, which will be expanded to 20 by 2024.

Source: LATAM Airlines Group

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