Philippines low cost airline Cebu Pacific will shift to recyclable, eco-friendly utensils for all flights starting October 1. It is the first budget airline to go a step further to protect the environment. The initiative is supported by the Philippines Department of Tourism.
Cebu Pacific teams up with the Philippine Department of Tourism to launch Juan Effect, a sustainable tourism program, aimed at engaging travelers and local stakeholders alike, to mitigate the impact of tourist arrivals on the environment.
On a national level, Juan Effect aims to encourage responsible travel among passengers, and empower everyone to change at least one everyday habit.
On a local level, Juan Effect will collaborate with island stakeholders to concerted action for the conservation of the environment.
Siargao will serve as the Juan Effect pilot module, wherein the airline together with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, local government units and tourism associations, will work together to implement sustainable tourism action plans. The local initiatives will be rolled out before the peak tourist and surfing season begins in Siargao in September 2018.
“As Cebu Pacific aims to fly 22 million passengers in 2018, we recognize sustainable tourism as a key priority for the airline. The Juan Effect program is a call for all stakeholders to come together, collaborate and cooperate towards concerted efforts, to ensure that the tourism industry progresses sustainably,” said Lance Gokongwei, President and CEO of Cebu Pacific.
During the Juan Effect launch, Gokongwei also announced Cebu Pacific will replace non-recyclable plastic spoons, forks, stirrers and cups with sustainable alternatives on all its domestic and international flights starting October 1, 2018.
The shift to eco-friendly utensils for inflight meals and refreshments is part of initiatives by the airline to push for sustainability and reduction of inflight waste. It will also cover flights mounted by subsidiary Cebgo.
On the average, the Cebu Pacific group mounts about 400 flights daily across 37 domestic and 26 international destinations. Those flights use approximately 18,500 pieces of plastic spoons and forks, plastic cups, and plastic stirrers daily.
“Part of the Juan Effect program is looking at the way we do things at Cebu Pacific. We want to cut down on our use of non-recyclable plastic to only what is necessary, and are committed to rolling out more initiatives to help protect our planet and ensure that we operate sustainably,” added Gokongwei.
The change to eco-friendly utensils for inflight catering is just the latest in environmental initiatives that Cebu Pacific is integrating into its operations and core strategy.
Over the past several months, the carrier has invested in technology and other operational measures that help reduce fuel burn and its consequential carbon emissions. These include a fuel management system that helps optimize operations; the Runway Overrun Prevention System (ROPS) cockpit technology for its Airbus fleet, which monitors and calculates optimal runway landing conditions; and Area Navigation (RNAV) data for more accurate navigation and approaches to various airports.