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The Next Economy
Alaska Airlines Empowers Guests to Reduce Emissions, Support Growth of SAF Market

This month, Alaska Mileage Plan members can earn Elite-Qualifying Miles when they support sustainable aviation fuel, contributing to their elite qualification for the new year.

Alaska Airlines has partnered with climate-tech company CHOOOSE to provide new options for sustainability-minded guests to take control of their travel-related carbon emissions by purchasing sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) credits or supporting nature-based climate projects.

Now through December 31, 2023, Alaska Mileage Plan members will earn 500 Elite-Qualifying Miles (EQMs) per $100 of SAF credits purchased (with a 5,000 EQM limit). These funds will go toward the purchase and use of SAF while providing a sustainability-focused way to reach that year-end mileage target and earn elite status for the year ahead.

In 2022, Alaska launched a program to engage its corporate customers in the decarbonization journey through the purchase of SAF credits and opportunities to improve the sustainability of business travel, including through use of SAF. Now, private travelers can join the effort by going to Alaska.chooose.today/eqm or reading a banner on the reservations confirmation page to learn more about the carbon emissions generated by their own prior or upcoming travel (with emission calculations based on the International Air Transport Association's carbon-emissions methodology. Guests can choose between SAF credits or from certified nature-based carbon-removal projects in geographies where Alaska flies — such as the Doyon Native Community Forest Project, Freres Biochar, the Guatemalan Conservation Coast and more.

Alaska is also rewarding guests who purchase a certain amount of SAF credits (i.e. SAF environmental attributes) with EQMs as part of the airline's year-end elite status promotions, further reflecting its emphasis on scaling and leading the advancement of SAF.

"We know that reaching our sustainability goals – including net-zero carbon emissions by 2040 – will require investment and action on all fronts, and that sustainable aviation fuel presents our best opportunity to take a leap forward on this journey," said Diana Birkett Rakow, SVP of Public Affairs and Sustainability at Alaska. "But today, there isn't enough SAF to meet demand – and we need to bring its cost down by creating scale. That's why, in addition to purchasing and using SAF, building partnerships, and advocating for public policy support, we're inviting our guests to join us – to learn more about SAF, to invest in its development, and to help us grow supply for the future. We're excited to link this work to our loyalty plan, helping guests get closer to that next elite tier, in partnership with a creative innovator like CHOOOSE; and we look forward to building on this platform."

CHOOOSE's platform enables both individuals and organizations to understand their carbon footprint, make carbon-informed decisions, and support trusted climate solutions around the world. The company says it's excited to continue to work with Alaska to help make carbon awareness and climate action even more accessible to more people by embedding opportunities for learning and action into a wide range of customer touchpoints.

“At CHOOOSE, we are proud to support Alaska Airlines in their continued efforts to advance SAF in the aviation industry. SAF is a crucial part of the airline’s immediate and long-term strategy to reduce the impact on the environment – which also includes improving operating efficiency, fleet modernization, new technology, high-quality carbon removals, waste reduction, and local ecosystems protection,” said CHOOOSE CEO Andreas Slettvoll. “We are honored to join Alaska Airlines on their decarbonization journey by providing insights into their travelers’ carbon footprints, encouraging carbon-informed decisions, and providing direct access to SAF.”

Alaska has been a leader in advancing the market for SAF and was the first commercial US airline to fly multiple routes using alternative fuel in 2011. But there is still not enough SAF to support the industry's operational needs, and that must change to meet the goals we have set as an industry. Since 2010, Alaska has worked with a coalition of partners to advance SAF – which produces up to 80 percent lower carbon emissions than traditional jet fuel – on multiple fronts including:

  • The airlines' largest SAF purchase of 185 million gallons from producer Gevo, and an additional SAF purchase agreement with producer Aemetis;

  • An agreement with E-Jet® producer Twelve to collaborate on and execute the first commercial flight powered by E-Jet® fuel – produced using recaptured carbon;

  • An agreement with Shell Aviation to expand the SAF market while working together to deepen the understanding of the technology, infrastructure, carbon accounting systems and public policy support needed to scale supply;

  • And partnerships with companies including Microsoft and others to reduce emissions from business travel.

This step is part of Alaska's continued "EverGreen journey" sustainability strategy, and includes immediate actions and long-term investments to reduce the carbon emissions of its operations, minimizing waste, and protecting local ecosystems. For more information about Alaska's collaboration with CHOOOSE, visit alaskaair.chooose.today.

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