EasyJet has become the first airline to sign a contract with Airbus for its carbon-removal initiative known as the Airbus Carbon Capture Offer.
The manufacturer first unveiled plans to offer a supply of carbon removal credits last year, with carriers including Air Canada, Air France-KLM, easyJet, International Airlines Group, LATAM Airlines Group, Lufthansa Group and Virgin Atlantic all signing Letters of Intent at the time to explore opportunities.
Airbus has partnered with 1PointFive, which is harnessing Direct Air Carbon Capture and Storage (DACCS) technology to filter and remove CO2 emissions from the air using high powered extraction fans, before storing it in underground reservoirs.
The firm is developing a 500,000 tonne Direct Air Capture facility – expected to be operational in mid-2025 – with Airbus pre-purchasing 400,000 tonnes of carbon removal credits to be delivered over four years.
Airbus said that “CO2 emissions released into the atmosphere during aircraft operations cannot be directly eliminated at source but with DACCS, an equivalent amount can be extracted from the air”.
EasyJet’s credits will last from 2026 to 2029, complementing the use of other carbon reduction technologies including Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF).
In 2022 British Airways added carbon removal credits to its options for customers looking to reduce their carbon footprint, although these are the result of different technology to DACCS.
Commenting on the news Thomas Haagensen (pictured) , group markets director at easyJet, said: “Decarbonising a hard to abate sector, such as aviation, is a huge challenge and we believe carbon removal will play an important role in addressing our residual emissions in the future, complementing other components to help us achieve our pathway to net zero.
“Our ultimate aim is to achieve zero carbon emission flying and, as well as investing into important projects like direct air carbon capture technology, we are working with multiple partners – including Airbus – to accelerate the development of zero carbon emission aircraft technology.”