Sustainability

Sustainability at American Airlines. Image of mountain top and stream.

A world worth traveling is a world worth protecting

Net zero carbon emissions by 2050

At American Airlines, sustainability means delivering the benefits of air travel while protecting the planet. Climate change is a pressing global challenge, and we’re committed to doing our part to address it. We’ve worked to increase our fuel efficiency, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and plan a low-carbon future.

We’re the first U.S. airline with a clear path to net zero carbon emissions by 2050, and we’ve committed to develop an intermediate, science-based target for the year 2035. To reach this goal, we’ve invested in newer, fuel-efficient aircraft, sustainable fuel and more.

2019 - 2020 Environmental, Social and Governance Report (PDF) Opens a PDF in a new window

Flying a younger, more efficient fleet

Aerial picture of a 787 Dreamliner

Since 2013 we’ve added 595 new aircraft and retired 667. Each new generation of aircraft targets 10 - 15% improvements in fuel efficiency. Our new fleet includes the Boeing 787 Dreamliner and the A321neo, which use the latest engine and airframe technologies.

With these efforts, we’ve created the youngest fleet among U.S. network carriers.

Investing in low-carbon fuel

Image of Neste team for low carbon fuel

In 2020 we committed to buy 9 million gallons of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) over 3 years from Neste. A leading provider of renewable products, Neste fuel meets the performance and safety standards of traditional jet fuel but has 75% lower greenhouse gas emissions.

As of 2021, our agreement is the industry’s single-largest SAF purchasing commitment by volume to date.

Logo - American Airlines and Cool Effect

Offering carbon offsets

The core focus of our sustainability strategy is increasing efficiency and reducing emissions. However, carbon offsets play a role as well.

In 2020 we introduced a program for customers to calculate their emissions and buy carbon offsets through Cool Effect. These offsets fund high-quality carbon-offset projects worldwide.

Cool Effect carbon offsets Opens another site in a new window that may not meet accessibility guidelines

Fueling a low-carbon future with Breakthrough Energy Catalyst

We’re backing up our climate commitments with action as one of Breakthrough Energy Catalyst’s first anchor partners. Together we’ll work to develop and support emissions-reduction solutions like sustainable fuel and clean energy technologies necessary to achieving a net zero economy by 2050.

Breakthrough Energy Catalyst Opens another site in a new window that may not meet accessibility guidelines

Joining the world’s largest corporate sustainability initiative

As a member of the United Nations (UN) Global Compact, we commit to addressing human rights, labor, environment and anti-corruption issues. We’re also taking action to support the UN Sustainable Development Goals that align with our business and areas of impact.

UN Global Compact Opens another site in a new window that may not meet accessibility guidelines

Following ESG best practices

We align our annual Environmental, Social and Governance Report with the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) and the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) – leading disclosure frameworks.

In 2020, American Airlines received an A– score from the global disclosure nonprofit CDP for our leadership in addressing climate risks.

Achieving LEED Gold Certification

We have a number of U.S. facilities that are LEED certified through the U.S. Green Building Council, including 2 new LEED Gold-certified buildings on our corporate campus. These new buildings divert 97% of construction waste from going to landfills, were built with green materials and provide preferred parking for zero- and low-emitting vehicles.

LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) is the most common green building rating system in the world. It evaluates projects for their energy efficiency, water conservation and use of sustainable materials.

Partnering with the National Park Foundation

The National Park Foundation protects some of the most treasured U.S. travel destinations. As the organization’s only airline partner, we support the National Park Foundation’s efforts to inspire a sense of wonder and a love of exploration.

The National Park Foundation will also be the first organization supported by Miles for Our Planet. AAdvantage® members can donate miles to organizations that protect and preserve our planet’s natural resources and contribute to climate change efforts.

Miles for Our Planet

Recycling and reducing waste

We recycle an average of 340,000 pounds of aluminum cans each year through our flight services. By changing our processes and materials, we’ve also eliminated thousands of pounds of plastic. We look forward to more efforts to reduce, reuse and recycle across our operations in the coming months.

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