Continental Announces Carbon Offsetting Program With Sustainable Travel International

Dec 03, 2007, 00:00 ET from Continental Airlines

    HOUSTON, Dec. 3 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Continental Airlines (NYSE:  
 CAL), the world's fifth largest airline, today announced that it has
 launched a carbon offsetting program, developed in partnership with
 non-profit Sustainable Travel International. The voluntary program allows
 customers worldwide to view the carbon footprint of their booked itinerary,
 which Sustainable Travel International calculates from fuel consumption of
 Continental's aircraft, and to make a contribution to Sustainable Travel
     Proceeds from customer contributions to Sustainable Travel
 International fund the purchase of carbon offsets, which are generated from
 high-impact sustainable development projects that are designed to reduce
 the impact of carbon dioxide emissions in the atmosphere. Sustainable
 Travel International provides carbon offset projects, located all over the
 world, which are independently verified or certified by third-party
     The carbon offsetting option is part of a company-wide commitment to
 environmental responsibility. The airline has achieved an almost 35 percent
 reduction in greenhouse gas emissions and fuel consumption per mainline
 revenue passenger mile flown over the past 10 years. This is due in large
 part to the efforts of its employees in streamlining operational procedures
 and to an investment of more than $12 billion to acquire 270 fuel-efficient
 aircraft and related equipment.
     "Having a high-profile, high-quality offset program available to
 Continental's customers is a significant step for mainstreaming carbon
 offsetting in air travel," explained Brian T. Mullis, President of
 Sustainable Travel International. "When combined with energy efficiency,
 greater use of renewable resources, waste reduction and thoughtful
 consumption, offsetting offers a solid strategy for addressing concerns
 associated with climate change."
     Customers who choose to participate in the carbon offsetting program
 may contribute to one of four project portfolios: Gold Standard emission
 reduction projects managed by MyClimate, which are renewable energy and
 energy efficiency projects validated, registered and verified following
 Clean Development Mechanism principles under the Kyoto Protocol;
 international reforestation projects that preserve and create critical
 forests and that are designed using the standards set forth by the Climate,
 Community, and Biodiversity Alliance; U.S. Green-e certified renewable
 energy projects, such as wind farms; or a combination of these projects.
     Customers may choose to contribute a suggested amount that is
 calculated based on the carbon emissions related to their itinerary, or
 they may choose to contribute a different amount toward the reduction of
 greenhouse gases.
     The carbon offsetting calculator on can be accessed in
 one of four ways: from a link on the confirmation page after a customer has
 purchased a ticket; under Reservations > Change/View Existing Reservations
 for an existing itinerary; via the "My Account" section (requires a OnePass
 account and booked itinerary); or through the About Continental > Company
 Profile > Commitment to the Environment section. No ticket purchase is
 required to access the offsetting calculator via About Continental.
     Moving forward, Continental plans to work with Sustainable Travel
 International to enhance the program to address environmental concerns and
 will continue to meet customers' needs.
     In addition to offering a carbon offset project for individual
 customers, Continental now has the ability to provide its contracted
 corporate customers the carbon emissions associated with their business
 travel with Continental.
     Continental is committed to promoting environmental responsibility
 within its culture and to reducing its environmental impacts, and has been
 recognized numerous times for its commitment to environmental
 responsibility. The carrier has received two awards from the Environmental
 Protection Agency (EPA) and two awards from the National Aeronautics and
 Space Administration (NASA) for environmental efforts. Additionally, in
 2007, FORTUNE magazine named Continental as one of ten "Green Giants,"
 corporations whose environmental policies go beyond what is required.
     In order to minimize the impact on the environment from its fleet and
 ground service equipment, Continental will continue to invest in the most
 effective technology and operating procedures feasible. In addition to the
 substantial reduction in emissions and fuel consumption from aircraft,
 Continental has reduced by approximately 75 percent nitrogen oxide
 emissions from ground equipment at the carrier's largest hub, in Houston,
 through switching to electric ground service equipment and other new
 technology. This technology is now being tested for use in cold climates.
     Through these investments and other projects, including the
 construction of airport facilities in an environmentally responsible
 manner, the testing of alternative fuels in ground service equipment, and
 an expansive recycling program, Continental will continue to manage the
 environmental impact of its business.
     Additional information on Continental's commitment to the environment,
 and about Continental's carbon offsetting program through Sustainable
 Travel International, is available at under "About
 Continental" > "Commitment to the Environment."
     Sustainable Travel International
 ( is a US-based non-profit
 organization whose mission is to promote sustainable development and
 responsible travel by providing programs that help travelers and
 travel-related companies protect the environmental, socio-cultural and
 economic values of the places they visit, and the planet at large.
 Sustainable Travel International introduced carbon offsetting and custom
 carbon calculators into the North American travel and tourism industry.
     Continental Airlines is the world's fifth largest airline. Continental,
 together with Continental Express and Continental Connection, has more than
 3,100 daily departures throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia, serving
 144 domestic and 138 international destinations. More than 580 additional
 points are served via SkyTeam alliance airlines. With more than 45,000
 employees, Continental has hubs serving New York, Houston, Cleveland and
 Guam, and together with Continental Express, carries approximately 67
 million passengers per year. Continental consistently earns awards and
 critical acclaim for both its operation and its corporate culture.
     For the fourth consecutive year, FORTUNE magazine named Continental the
 No. 1 World's Most Admired Airline on its 2007 list of World's Most Admired
 Companies. Continental was also named the No. 1 airline on the
 publication's 2007 America's Most Admired airline industry list.
 Additionally, Continental again won major awards at the OAG Airline of the
 Year Awards including "Best Airline Based in North America" for the fourth
 year in a row, and "Best Executive/Business Class" for the fifth
 consecutive year. For more company information, visit

SOURCE Continental Airlines