Qantas sets goal of net zero carbon emissions by 2050

A kangaroo hopping in front of bush and Qantas A380
The airline has set a goal of net zero carbon emissions by 2050. Photo credit: Getty Images/Newshub.

Qantas has committed to net zero carbon emissions by 2050 and is investing substantially in sustainability projects to achieve this goal.

The airline will also spend AU$50 million over 10 years to help develop sustainable aviation fuel and beginning immediately, double the number of its flights with carbon emissions offset.

Qantas is only the second airline in the world to commit to net zero emissions by 2050, following a similar announcement by British Airways owner IAG last month.

The new emission standards will apply across the entire Qantas group, which includes Jetstar, QantasLink and Qantas Freight.

Qantas says approximately 10 percent of its customers who book online choose to offset their carbon emissions by paying an additional fee. The airline will now match those contributions.

Through its 'Future Planet' programme, the airline works on causes such as the protection of the Great Barrier Reef, reducing wildfires in Western Australia and securing native forests in Tasmania.

Qantas CEO Alan Joyce said the airline's commitments would make Qantas a leader in the aviation industry’s efforts to reduce carbon emissions.

"We recognise that airlines have a responsibility to cut emissions and combat climate change," he said.

"We've already made some good progress, especially by investing in newer aircraft that have a much smaller carbon footprint."

Qantas is also in the process of replacing its Boeing 747 fleet with Boeing 787 Dreamliners, which burn 20 percent less fuel.