CEBU Pacific Air will be acquiring 32 eco-planes by 2022, vice president for marketing and distribution Candice Iyog said.
To support their sustainable tourism program Juan Effect, Iyog said the company is investing in Airbus A31neo planes, which burns 1/3 less fuel per passenger than the A320 model.
“The A31neos are new engine options, so it’s really about the engines that burn 35 percent less fuel. It is an investment on our part, but it is about investing in long-term gains. Economically, because it burns less fuel, it’s better for us from a commercial standpoint. But it’s also two-pronged because burning less fuel is also better for the environment,” she said during the Routes Asia 2019 Summit held in Cebu City.
Iyog said they also shifted to more environment-friendly inflight utensils, which translate to 460,000 fewer pieces of single-use plastics every month.
Another initiative of the airline is to install 540 kilowatts of solar panels in their office building so they can source 20 percent of their electricity needs from the sun.
Iyog said their efforts in developing mindful tourists continue so they can support the government in sustainable tourism.
“What we do to really help sustainable tourism is really how we inform the public, how we try to elicit help from the public so when they do enjoy our islands, they know how to do it,” she said. “We want to create mindful travelers who appreciate the island but make sure that they also contribute to its preservation.”
With Juan Effect, tourists are encouraged to reduce the use of single-use plastics by bringing their own eco-bags and water bottles.
“It may be a small thing for now to begin with, but we really believe that one small act of one tourist for an island that receives hundreds of thousands of tourists will already reduce waste,” she said.
The Juan Effect launched in Boracay and Siargao, and Iyog said they are looking for other tourist destinations in the country, in cooperation with the Department of Tourism (DOT).
“We talk to the DOT to know what their key priority destinations are, and we look for non-government organizations in the island who can help us prioritize in terms of efforts because they would know best what the problems or the challenges in the island are,” she said.