Emirates reaffirms commitments to sustainability & wildlife

By Georgia Wilson
Acutely aware of its role in the planet’s natural ecosystem, Emirates reaffirms its commitments to its environmental goals...

While people continue to mitigate the impact of COVID-19, Emirates believes there is also a call to pause and reflect on environmental goals during this time. Emirates showcased its environmental performance in its annual finance report for 2019 to 2020, detailing a holistic picture and context for its achievements.


Underpinned by its young, and technologically advanced fleet, Emirates is committed to reducing its carbon emissions, a central goal to the airlines environmental sustainability strategy.

Delivering a 1.9% improvement in passenger fuel efficiency for the year, the airline has been harnessing a comprehensive fuel efficiency programme which analyses and implements ways to reduce unnecessary fuel burn and emissions wherever it is operationally feasible.

In addition to these efforts, the airline has been working to optimise its flight plans and fuel uplifts - all the while maintaining safety and operational integrity - saving an estimated 38,000 tonnes of fuel, equal to 120,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions. These efforts made by the airline were supported by data-driven methodologies and awareness programmes for its pilots.

Emirates is also committed to environmental stewardship, as well as the use of collaboration, consensus and change along its entire ecosystem. This ranges from framing internal policies to empowering employees and mandating standards with partners and vendors.

The Emirates Group’s leadership team - last year - also approved an updated environmental framework, and throughout the year Emirates has taken positive action to progress against the environmental framework.


An important cause for the airline is keeping wildlife in the wild. With this in mind, Emirates is committed to tackling illegal trading and selling of wild animals either for pets or use in food, medicine, exotic leather, jewellery or ornaments.

Across the industry, Emirates is actively fighting this cause both locally and internationally. The airline is currently a part of United for Wildlife, Reducing Opportunities for Unlawful Transport of Endangered Species (ROUTES), and the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC).

When it comes to carrying banned species, hunting trophies or products associated with illegal wildlife activities, Emirates has a zero tolerance. With its ground-handling team trained in IATA’s Live Animal Regulations and its internal policies. In addition over 2,500 employees were trained in 2019 to recognise and report suspicious cargo.

The airline has also been helping protect Australia’s flora and fauna for more than 10 years at Emirates Wolgan Valley, a conservation resort in New South Wales, in addition to working with the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve (DDCR) for more than 20 years, and will continue to build on its successful programmes to track, maintain and reintroduce native wildlife species.

To discover more about Emirates’ environmental goals and impact, click here!

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