Alaska Airlines and the Surfrider Foundation partner to protect coastal habitats and reduce waste from single-use plastics

Photos courtesy of The Surfrider Foundation.

April is Earth Month, a time when we come together to care for the planet. Alaska is all about care and we’re on a journey to care for the environment around us, but we know we can’t achieve a greener future alone. That’s why we’re proud to announce a special partnership to help protect the ocean, waves and beaches in all the incredible places where we live and fly. 

This month, Alaska and Surfrider will begin organizing a series of events to invite Alaska employees and members of our West Coast communities, including California, Hawaii and the Pacific Northwest, to clean up beaches through Surfrider’s extensive network of grassroots leaders and volunteers. We’ll also work together on ongoing cleanup and restoration projects and collaborate on education and advocacy to support the reduction of single-use plastics.  

We’re committed to being part of a positive future for the role that our ocean and coasts play in our communities, which is why we’ve set goals for our company to reduce waste and have made significant progress in the last few years to reduce single-use plastic on our flights,” said Scott Coughlan, director of sustainability at Alaska Airlines.  “The Surfrider team truly walks the talk, rolling up their sleeves to clean up beaches and other impacted areas. We are excited to share our passion for bringing people together, and for sustainability, to partner on this journey.”

We’re proud to be the first airline to eliminate plastic bottles, cups, straws, stir sticks and citrus picks from inflight service, annually reducing more than 2.2 million pounds of plastic waste. 

We have set voluntary sustainability goals for reducing our environmental impact in carbon, waste, and water – including replacing the top five waste-producing items in onboard service by 2025 — and balancing our water footprint through habitat restoration projects. While we take steps to eliminate plastics, we also encourage our guests to join in reducing waste by bringing their own water bottles to #FillBeforeYouFly.  

The Surfrider Foundation is proud to partner with Alaska Airlines, which has been a leader in reducing single-use plastics in air travel,” said Surfrider’s CEO Dr. Chad Nelsen. “Starting in 2018 with the elimination of straws, they are now encouraging their passengers to use reusables and #fillbeforeyoufly, while also eliminating plastics cups. We are excited to extend their commitment to reduce plastic pollution to coastal communities through cleanups and local education.” 

Since 1984, the Surfrider Foundation has been working to protect and preserve the world’s ocean, waves and beaches for all people through a powerful activist network. It started as a group of surfers that came together to protect the beaches in Malibu, California and has grown into one of the largest coastal protection groups in the world.