Leaving on a Jet Plane, but Concerned About Your Impact on the Environment? Greenopia Updates its Green Airline Ratings

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Greenopia has updated its environmental ratings of 10 of the biggest commercial airlines operating domestic flights across America. Topping the list were Virgin America and Continental Airlines.

Greenopia has updated its environmental ratings of 10 of the biggest commercial airlines operating domestic flights across America. Topping the list were Virgin America and Continental Airlines.

Air travel in general has come under strict scrutiny because of the magnitude of emissions associated with it. Complicating the discussion is the notion of radiative forcing index, which states that emissions at higher altitudes could have a different impact than those at ground level. Although the science comes down on both sides, everyone agrees that air travel must be addressed environmentally.

"It's a dilemma," commented founder of Greenopia, Gay Browne. "People are going to travel, whatever method they choose will impact the planet. Our readers want to know how to get to their destination with the smallest environmental footprint, especially if they are boarding a jumbo jet. We appreciate those airlines like Virgin and Continental that are taking great strides to green their passenger miles."

Greenopia collected data from airline annual reports and other publicly disclosed documents and measured the data against stringent environmental criteria. The criteria included fleet age, fuel consumption practices, carbon offsets, green building design, recycling programs, and organic, local and sustainable food items available onboard. Lastly a life-cycle weighting by environmental impact of each criterion determined the rankings.

“It’s not always clear which method of transportation is the most environmentally-friendly,” said Doug Mazeffa, Research Director of Greenopia. “Depending on the occupancy, distance, and vehicle class, sometimes it’s more environmentally efficient to take a plane, other times it can be mass transit, and sometimes it can just be carpooling.”

The other rated airlines were American, Delta, Jet Blue, Horizon, Northwest, Southwest, United, and US Airways.

The complete Airline Rankings are available online for free at http://www.greenopia.com/.

Greenopia employs its award-winning eco-analysis method to deliver actionable green-assessments to the rapidly growing green consumer market. Green businesses and merchants use Greenopia's range of targeted marketing methods to reach consumers making greener choices.

About Greenopia: The leading online directory for green, sustainable and socially conscious, daily purchase decisions. Greenopia provides the market's only independent rating and ranking of green services and products. Our rankings and ratings are based on our review of publicly available information and reflect our evaluation of such information. To find out more, please visit http://www.greenopia.com.

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