Iberia has launched its carbon offsetting program, known as CO2labora. The Spanish flag carrier has partnered with CHOOOSE to offer passengers a chance to pay for their emissions on each flight, taking into variables such as weather and aircraft type as well.

Available now

Carbon offsetting has been popular with airlines for years now, especially in Europe. Iberia, and its subsidiary Iberia Express, will now allow passengers to pay an offset charge after booking their flights or even retrospectively for any flight you have taken. The calculator accounts for the aircraft type (with widebodies having more of a toll on the environment), weather, cabin type, and operational efficiency.

As has become common, Iberia has selected CHOOOSE to run its carbon calculator and offset project, just as Air Canada did a few weeks ago. This allows the airline to plug in a ready-made system and select the projects it wishes to support from the funds of the program.

Iberia A330

Photo: Iberia

Iberia has chosen to support two climate projects, one in Izabal, on the coast of Guatemala, and the other in the Peruvian Amazon jungle. The first project promotes the creation of new nature reserves and existing natural forests on the coasts. The second project will fund the growth of socially inclusive companies that support the several indigenous communities at the edge of the Amazon.

How much do offsets cost?

To demonstrate how much carbon offsetting will actually cost you, we ran some test numbers. A roundtrip flight from London Heathrow (LHR) to Madrid-Barajas (MAD) generates 181.6kg of CO2 when traveling in economy and on a narrowbody aircraft. To offset this route, passengers will have to pay €3.64 ($3.58), arguably not a very high sum. In business class, this number jumps to €10 ($9.83), highlighting the impact of seat real estate on flights.

For a long-haul flight, say from MAD to Bogota, Colombia, passengers generate 947.5kgs of CO2 emissions in round-trip economy class. Offsetting the impact will run you €14.3 ($14), most likely a fraction of the ticket price paid on such a flight. However, flying this route in business class generates an eye-watering 4,009kgs of CO2e, costing €57 ($56) to offset.

A330 business class

Photo: Iberia

As flights get longer, passengers will be expected to pay more to substitute their environmental impact. Notably, Iberia’s platform allows travelers to choose which flights they wish to offset, allowing them to skip certain legs. With the funding going to verified climate projects, offsetting trips has never been easier and is unlikely to be a major burden for many passengers.

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Greater efficiency

While passengers can play a small part in the fight against emissions, airlines are in charge of the bigger strides toward a carbon-neutral operation. Iberia has already committed to flying 10% of its flights with sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) by 2030 and is currently testing long-haul flights with SAFs. Additionally, the carrier says its retirement of aging planes like the A340 and the addition of the likes of the A350 and A321neo are crucial to cutting emissions by up to 20%. For now, carbon offsetting is just one step in a long way to a sustainable aviation future.

Have you ever paid for a carbon offset? Let us know in the comments.

  • Iberia Airbus A350-941 EC-NDR

    Iberia

    IATA/ICAO Code:
    IB/IBE

    Airline Type:
    Full Service Carrier

    Hub(s):
    Madrid Barajas Airport

    Year Founded:
    1927

    Alliance:
    oneworld

    Airline Group:
    IAG

    CEO:
    Javier Sánchez-Prieto

    Country:
    Spain

Source: simpleflying.com

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