We’re passionate about managing our business responsibly. This means supporting our people and local communities while celebrating equality, diversity and inclusion. And continuing the fight against human and wildlife trafficking.
It also means doing everything we can to reduce aviation’s environmental impact. From investing in sustainable fuels to flying greener, more fuel-efficient aircraft, we’re helping drive change within our industry.
From January 2020 we committed to offset our carbon emissions on all flights within the UK. Emissions are offset by investing in a range of global carbon reduction projects – such as rainforest protection and reforestation programmes.
Following the unprecedented and sustained impact of coronavirus on the aviation industry and the disruption it has caused to our flying schedule, we will be purchasing the credits to offset all our domestic flying for 2020 in the first quarter of 2021, giving us time to understand the total volume of carbon we need to offset.
Travelling further afield? You can reduce your carbon footprint with the help of our carbon offset calculator.
We’re committed to supporting people and communities where we fly. Our flagship charity programme Flying Start, a partnership with Comic Relief, helps disadvantaged young people in the UK and around the world have the best possible start in life. Thanks to the generosity of our customers and the incredible fundraising efforts of our staff, we’ve raised over £24 million. This means Flying Start has helped over 800,000 people to a brighter future.
Climate change is the most urgent environmental challenge the world is facing.
Our parent company IAG, have already set a world-first by becoming the first airline group to commit to net-zero CO2 emissions by 2050. We’re proud to play a leading role in fulfilling its vision to become the world’s leading airline group on sustainability.
We were the first airline in Europe to invest in building a waste to sustainable aviation fuel plant with sustainable fuels technology company, Velocys, with the goal of building a facility to convert household and commercial waste into sustainable aviation fuel; a long-term relationship to enable us to begin to power our fleet more sustainably for years to come.
Through our Altalto project, over 500,000 tonnes per year of non-recyclable everyday household and commercial solid waste destined for landfill or incineration, will be converted into clean-burning, sustainable aviation fuel. The technology will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 70 per cent for every tonne of sustainable jet fuel that replaces a tonne of conventional fossil fuel.
Our dedicated fuel efficiency team constantly review all aspects of our business to ensure we’re saving fuel wherever possible.
We’ve launched a range of initiatives that have helped lower our carbon emissions by more than 360,000 tonnes since 2014.
We’re currently developing new in-flight software that will help us fly in the most sustainable and efficient way possible. It’s this level of innovation will help us continue to build on our successes.
We’re investing £6.5 billion in our business over the next five years. This includes operating 44 new fuel-efficient aircraft, with a further 73 on order.
The Airbus A350 is the latest addition to our fleet and is 25% more fuel-efficient than the similar-sized aircraft it replaces. Featuring weight-reducing composite materials, refined aerodynamics and new Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engines, the A350 offers a much greener way to fly long-haul.
We’ve participated in the European Union Emissions Trading System (EU ETS) since its introduction in 2012. The EU ETS develop emissions reduction targets for a variety of industries across Europe.
From 2020, carbon emissions on our international flights will be capped under the Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for Aviation (CORSIA). This worldwide carbon pricing scheme will reduce our emissions by investing in a range of worldwide projects.
We worked alongside governments and industry associations over the past decade to help develop CORSIA. The scheme will reduce the aviation industry’s emissions by 2.5 billion tonnes of CO2 from 2021–2035.
Our Carbon Fund gives people the opportunity to reduce the impact of climate change when they book flights with us.
The Carbon Fund provides funding for community renewable energy projects in the UK and overseas.
Our customers have supported almost 40 projects so far, helping around 450,000 people and providing community benefits of over £3million.
The funds are managed by Pure Leapfrog, a non-for-profit charity working to provide opportunities for communities to own, generate and benefit from clean, green power.
The following are two of the most recent projects that the British Airways Carbon Fund has supported.
Carbon Fund example 1: Ol Pejeta Conservancy, Laikipia County, Kenya
Ol Pejeta Conservancy in Kenya is a wildlife conservation and community reinvestment programme that helps improve the livelihoods of rural communities. Most of the communities around Ol Pejeta are not connected to mains electricity and people typically turn to fossil fuels for power.
The British Airways Carbon Fund has helped fund the replacement of two diesel-powered water pumps with solar-powered pumps. As well as reducing the conservation’s environmental footprint, the new pumps provide financial savings and improved water resource management in a drought-prone area.
Money saved by the project enables further conservation work, including funding to protect endangered species such as the Northern White Rhinoceros.
The solar pump house also acts as a Wi-Fi hub, enabling broadband access up to 15 km from the pump. Local schools can use this Wi-Fi for free, supporting pupils’ education.
Carbon Fund example 2: KLAS Care, Renfrewshire, Scotland
A former janitor’s house which was derelict for 7 years has undergone a significant refurbishment. It's now providing much-needed community space in a Renfrewshire town.
The building, which provides after school care operated by social enterprise KLAS Care, has become the hub for a growing number of community groups in the East Fulton area of Linwood.
The installation of the building’s energy-efficient lighting, heating, hot water system and highly-rated insulation was made possible by a £12,000 funding package from the British Airways Carbon Fund.
A further donation of £5,000 from the British Airways Carbon Fund in the next round of funding will see the installation of solar panels on the building. This will further reduce energy costs and help the social enterprise initiative become even more financially viable, benefiting the community as a whole.
We seek to conduct all activities in an environmentally responsible manner and are committed to:
We are determined to play our part to reduce our environmental impact. Our corporate objectives are to decrease noise per flight, minimise our waste and disposal to landfill and increase re-using and recycling across our operation.
We are committed to minimising the impact of noise from aircraft activities on local communities and have set a goal to reduce the average noise produced per flight by 13 per cent by 2020 (compared to 2015). The airline regularly monitors the noise performance of its aircraft fleet and pro-actively engages with regulators, airports, communities and other stakeholders.
Our new A350 aircraft are 50 per cent quieter. Our short haul operations topped the Heathrow Fly Quiet and Green table in Q1 and Q2 of 2019.
Air quality is an important issue for the community living near airports. We are focusing our efforts to improve the local air quality on the following areas:
*Figure based on suitcases weighing 23kg.
British Airways’ Environmental Policy demonstrates our ongoing commitment to continuously improve environmental performance throughout the organisation.
Our environmental management system is certified through the International Air Transport Association (IATA) IEnvA system. The IEnvA system is specific for airlines and demonstrates equivalency to the new ISO 14001: 2015 EMS standard.
We are committed to operating our business in a responsible manner.
We are committed to upholding local and international laws on antidiscrimination and expect both colleagues and customers to behave in accordance with these requirements.
Everyone working for us is expected to act with integrity, in accordance with company policies and in compliance of the laws of the countries where they work. Our suppliers are bound by the terms of the IAG Supplier Code of Conduct which requires them to:
British Airways supports tackling human trafficking. Our cabin and flight crew have the most exposure to potential trafficking situations and are trained to spot incidents.
British Airways has a zero-tolerance approach to Modern Slavery. Our full statement on Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking.
Our customers’ safety and well-being is always our top priority. We work continuously to make flying a reality for all and to improve our customer satisfaction.
Our fleet of almost 300 aircraft are checked before and after every flight by our highly experienced engineers, who have on an average 19 years of experience.
We are proud to offer additional support to more than half a million customers with declared disabilities each year and are committed to making journeys easier and championing accessibility for those with physical mobility, hearing and sight impairments and hidden disabilities.
We are continually investing in training for our staff to help them to understand some of the challenges that our customers face when they travel and how we can support them.
We work closely with our airport partners to improve the facilities available to disabled customers, and the ease with which they’re able to travel. At our main base at Heathrow we have a dedicated check-in area and prioritise customers with special needs during times of disruption. We are working on new ways to improve the service and information we provide to customers.
Flying is an exciting experience and we work hard to ensure our customers enjoy it. We are investing £6.5bn to improve the experience our customers have at the airport, in our lounges and on board, including new dining experiences and providing at-seat power and industry-leading high speed WiFi at every seat.
We run our acclaimed Flying with Confidence course across the year to help nervous flyers overcome their fears. Over the last 25 years the one-day course has helped more than 40,000 people. The course provides attendees with the knowledge and techniques needed to overcome a fear of flying. The course is concluded with a short flight at the end of the day, accompanied by our fantastic team of pilots, cabin crew and psychologists.
We know our colleagues can only perform at their best if we look after their well-being, from physical health and mental resilience right through to financial health and social support. A dedicated wellbeing team works closely with our health services and a network of sponsors and advisors who champion wellbeing throughout our business. We regularly increase awareness of physical and mental health risks and provide a range of help and support to those who need it.
We understand that diverse perspectives, experiences and backgrounds enable our business to flourish, be more dynamic and continue to grow. Our colleagues reflect the many different communities around the world that we serve. From gender and ethnicity to our commitment to support our colleagues across the generations, we value diversity in every sense.
We encourage our people to celebrate and be proud of diversity. We strive to grow an inclusive environment in which everyone can thrive. Our commitment is embraced by our leaders, championed by our employee network groups, and supported by our relationships with external partners, including Stonewall and the Business Disability Forum.
As part of British Airways’ diversity and inclusion strategy we are committed to increasing the gender balance by working with schools and colleges to promote opportunities in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) related careers. We also have an apprenticeship and work experience programme to encourage a diverse mix of new entrants into the organisation and to encourage a healthy talent pipeline. We work across the airline to promote stories of great female role models, as we did in 2018, with International Women's Day at British Airways.
The Government has introduced Gender Pay Gap legislation requiring companies that employ 250 or more people to report their gender and bonus gap. The legislation has specific reporting requirements and the reports for British Airways are available below.
As a global airline, we bring communities and people together every day and we are committed to having a positive impact in the communities we fly to.
Our support is focused on helping disadvantaged young people in the UK and around the world to have the best possible start in life. We do this through our flagship Flying Start programme, a global partnership with Comic Relief, a UK-based charity with the vision of a just world free from poverty.
During our flights we encourage our customers to donate any spare currency they may have because small change makes a big difference. Alongside customer donations, British Airways staff raise hundreds of thousands of pounds every year.
Since the partnership launched in July 2010, Flying Start has raised more than £24 million and helped more than 800,000 people in the UK and in some of the world's poorest communities. For example, 100,000 children under five across Sub Saharan Africa have been immunised against five deadly diseases and 2,733 young carers in the UK have been able to join after-school programmes.
In times of crisis we work with partners, including the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC), to ensure that vital relief gets to where it’s needed most as quickly as possible.
The DEC brings together 14 leading UK aid agencies to raise money in times of humanitarian crises. By working together, we raise funds to save, protect and rebuild lives in vulnerable communities that are impacted by major disasters. British Airways is proud to support the DEC as a member of its Rapid Response Network. Since 2013 our colleagues and customers have raised over £1.7 million to help people affected by humanitarian crises in countries including Nepal, the Philippines, Yemen and Indonesia.
We’ve teamed up with the British Red Cross to support communities in the UK affected by emergencies such as extreme weather or house fires. We’ll help recruit, train and support its staff and volunteers – helping those in crisis with basic necessities, like first aid, food and shelter, as well as providing emotional support.
By supporting this vital crisis response work, we’ll be helping the British Red Cross keep local communities feeling safe and supported, no matter the crisis.
Working together, we’ll connect human kindness with human crisis.
Through our payroll giving and match funding schemes, we help our colleagues to support more than 600 different charities close to their hearts.
Payroll Giving is a quick and easy way for colleagues to make a regular donation to the causes they care about most. There are currently more than 3,700 British Airways colleagues collectively donating almost £1 million a year through payroll giving, ranging from Cancer Research to Battersea Dogs and Cats Home.
In 2019, we received a Silver Award in the Annual Payroll Giving Quality Mark Awards recognising the airline’s commitment to workplace giving.
INSPIRE is how we engage the next generation of talent. By giving them a taste of work and how we do aviation. It’s an award-winning programme that’s a useful stepping stone between education and starting a career. We introduce young people to workplace etiquette, develop their soft skills and show them how we lead the way in challenging perceptions and breaking down stereotypes. The programme is made up of colleague insights from our volunteers, teaching insight days and work experience placements.
For more information on all our INSPIRE activities please visit our careers website.
British Airways Holidays has partnered with the Born Free Foundation, a world-renowned and respected animal welfare and conservation charity, to underpin and support our Animal Welfare Policy.
We are committed to:
We will not:
We will continue to:
British Airways is also a signatory to the United for Wildlife Transport Taskforce, known as the Buckingham Palace Declaration.
We are committed to:
In 2018 British Airways teamed up with Monkey World in Dorset to rescue a baby slow loris primate named Nora from being sold illegally at a pet shop in Lebanon. The endangered primate had already been prised away from her mother, but when local authorities in Lebanon discovered her, she was confiscated and cared for by Animals Lebanon. The organisation contacted Monkey World in Dorset to ask if they could arrange a permanent home for her with their loris community.
Nora travelled as a VIP in the cabin on a British Airways flight from Beirut to London, so that she could be given the best care throughout this special journey to her new home. She was the first endangered animal to be confiscated under the new Animal Protection and Welfare Laws in Lebanon, and her case will be moved to the courts for prosecution.
British Airways has a long and proud history of working with primates. We helped rescue Kan’bulo, another slow loris which had been smuggled into the Maldives and rescued as part of a drugs raid in 2014. In 2017, we assisted with the rescue of Mimi, an Orang-utan from Russia.