Attending to the Planet

Southwest operates more than 4,000 daily flights during peak travel season, the most of any domestic airline. This allows us to carry out our Purpose—connecting People to what’s important in their lives through friendly, reliable, and low-cost air travel—on a massive scale. By improving our energy efficiency, reducing the amount of waste we generate, and working to conserve the environment in the places where we live and work, we can protect our Planet for current and future generations.

Key Accomplishments

32.8%

We have improved jet fuel efficiency by 32.8% on a revenue ton mile (RTM)33) A revenue ton mile (RTM) is one ton of revenue traffic (passenger and cargo) transported one mile. basis since 2005.

Our CO2e intensity ratios have improved for the 7th straight year
3,757 tons

In 2018, we recycled 3,757 tons of material, an effort that directly reduces our impact on landfills.

To continue our focus on becoming a leading global citizen, it is imperative that we strive to reduce our environmental impact. To help us achieve that goal we have aggressive efforts in place to reduce resource consumption, manage solid waste, and recycle wherever possible. We are also leading the industry in our repurposing efforts and continuously seeking ways to improve our environment. It's as much about doing the right thing as it is about being good environmental stewards.
—Chris Monroe, Senior Vice President Finance
Key Topic

Energy Use

Each one of our more than 4,000 daily flights represents an opportunity to improve our energy efficiency and lower our emissions. We constantly strive to find new ways to use energy more efficiently throughout our system, which helps us maintain low costs while lessening our impact on the Planet.11) The 2018 Southwest Airlines One Report contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Specific forward-looking statements include, without limitation, statements related to (i) the Company’s Vision; (ii) the Company’s financial position, outlook, goals, targets, strategies, plans, expectations, and projected results of operations, including specific factors expected to impact the Company’s results of operations; (iii) the Company’s network, growth, and capacity plans, strategies, opportunities, and expectations; (iv) the Company’s expectations and goals with respect to enhancing Shareholder value and returning value to Shareholders; (v) the Company’s fleet plans, strategies, and expectations, including its fleet modernization initiatives, and the Company’s related financial and operational expectations; (vi) the Company’s operational initiatives and related plans and expectations, including with respect to its technology and innovation initiatives; and (vii) the Company’s other initiatives, including construction, safety, fuel, and environmental initiatives, and related plans and expectations. These statements involve risks, uncertainties, assumptions, and other factors that are difficult to predict and that could cause actual results to vary materially from those expressed in or indicated by them. Factors include, among others, (i) changes in demand for the Company’s services and other changes in consumer behavior; (ii) the impact of a continually changing business environment, economic conditions, fuel prices, actions of competitors (including without limitation pricing, product, scheduling, capacity, and network decisions, and consolidation and alliance activities), and other factors beyond the Company’s control, on the Company’s business decisions, plans, strategies, and results; (iii) the impact of governmental actions and governmental regulations related to the Company’s operations, in particular with respect to the grounding of the Company’s 737 MAX 8 fleet; (iv) the Company’s dependence on third parties, in particular with respect to its fleet and technology plans and expectations, and the impact on the Company’s operations and results of operations of any related third party delays or non-performance; (v) the Company’s ability to timely and effectively implement, transition, and maintain the necessary information technology systems and infrastructure to support its operations and initiatives; (vi) the Company’s ability to timely and effectively prioritize its initiatives and related expenditures; (vii) the impact of labor matters on the Company’s business decisions, plans, strategies, and costs; (viii) changes in aircraft fuel prices, the volatility of commodities used by the Company for hedging jet fuel, and any changes to the Company’s fuel hedging strategies and positions; and (ix) other factors, as described in the Company’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including the detailed factors discussed under the heading “Risk Factors” in the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended Dec. 31, 2018.

Smart Investments
Smart Investments
Southwest has invested more than $600 million in fuel efficiency improvements since 2002.
Fuel and Flight Planning Initiatives
Fuel and Flight Planning Initiatives
Through our fuel and flight planning initiatives, we saved nearly 13 million gallons of fuel in 2018.
Key Topic

Waste

We emphasize recycling and reuse of materials whenever possible. Whether on the ground or in the air, our efforts to reduce waste are at the Heart of how we steward the Planet.

Limiting e-Waste
Limiting e-Waste
In 2018, we recycled or refurbished more than 193 tons of electronic waste.
Landfill Diversion
Landfill Diversion
Our recycling efforts kept 3,757 tons of waste out of landfills in 2018.
Key Topic

Conservation

We believe that what works for our Company can also work well for the Planet. Teamwork has always been at the Heart of Southwest, and we believe that conservation should be a collective effort as well. When it comes to promoting conservation, our Cohearts reinforce our values by working alongside other like-minded individuals and organizations to help preserve and protect the Planet we call home.

60
Unique environmental projects in 22 states.
Working together in 2018, our Earth Month collaboration with Student Conservation Association (SCA) allowed us to mobilize more than 4,000 volunteers and plant more than 3,000 trees, flowers, and shrubs.
136,000
square feet of parks and public green spaces conserved.

Looking Forward11) The 2018 Southwest Airlines One Report contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Specific forward-looking statements include, without limitation, statements related to (i) the Company’s Vision; (ii) the Company’s financial position, outlook, goals, targets, strategies, plans, expectations, and projected results of operations, including specific factors expected to impact the Company’s results of operations; (iii) the Company’s network, growth, and capacity plans, strategies, opportunities, and expectations; (iv) the Company’s expectations and goals with respect to enhancing Shareholder value and returning value to Shareholders; (v) the Company’s fleet plans, strategies, and expectations, including its fleet modernization initiatives, and the Company’s related financial and operational expectations; (vi) the Company’s operational initiatives and related plans and expectations, including with respect to its technology and innovation initiatives; and (vii) the Company’s other initiatives, including construction, safety, fuel, and environmental initiatives, and related plans and expectations. These statements involve risks, uncertainties, assumptions, and other factors that are difficult to predict and that could cause actual results to vary materially from those expressed in or indicated by them. Factors include, among others, (i) changes in demand for the Company’s services and other changes in consumer behavior; (ii) the impact of a continually changing business environment, economic conditions, fuel prices, actions of competitors (including without limitation pricing, product, scheduling, capacity, and network decisions, and consolidation and alliance activities), and other factors beyond the Company’s control, on the Company’s business decisions, plans, strategies, and results; (iii) the impact of governmental actions and governmental regulations related to the Company’s operations, in particular with respect to the grounding of the Company’s 737 MAX 8 fleet; (iv) the Company’s dependence on third parties, in particular with respect to its fleet and technology plans and expectations, and the impact on the Company’s operations and results of operations of any related third party delays or non-performance; (v) the Company’s ability to timely and effectively implement, transition, and maintain the necessary information technology systems and infrastructure to support its operations and initiatives; (vi) the Company’s ability to timely and effectively prioritize its initiatives and related expenditures; (vii) the impact of labor matters on the Company’s business decisions, plans, strategies, and costs; (viii) changes in aircraft fuel prices, the volatility of commodities used by the Company for hedging jet fuel, and any changes to the Company’s fuel hedging strategies and positions; and (ix) other factors, as described in the Company’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including the detailed factors discussed under the heading “Risk Factors” in the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended Dec. 31, 2018.

  • Continue Repurposing Program
    Stay tuned for new ways we are enhancing our "Repurpose with Purpose" initiative as we increase the volume of repurposed items and materials.
  • Introduce Sustainable Aviation Fuel
    We've committed to purchase three million gallons of sustainable aviation fuel per year, with the first fuel expected to be delivered in 2020.
  • Deepen Partner Relationships
    We will continue to collaborate with various organizations as we work toward our environmental goals and focus areas.

Planet Data Table

Five Year Summary
Environmental Impacts
 20182017201620152014
Total energy consumption (megawatt-hours (MWh))3535) Conversions to MWh are based on default densities and heating values from the CDP guidance document, “Technical Note: Conversion of fuel data to MWh.” We use this unit of measurement for consistency with our CDP reporting.81,128,55879,203,01177,366,03273,688,16169,827,294
Production activity (revenue ton miles (RTMs33) A revenue ton mile (RTM) is one ton of revenue traffic (passenger and cargo) transported one mile.))13.5 billion13.0 billion12.6 billion11.9 billion10.9 billion
Intensity ratio (MWh/1,000 RTMs)6.036.086.136.206.39
Water consumption (gallons)3737) Water consumption is primarily for domestic use at our facilities.99 million85 million83 million80 million 83 million
Intensity ratio (gallons/Employee)1313) Active, full-time equivalent Employees as of Dec. 31 for specific calendar year.Nearly
1,700
More than 1,500More than 1,500More than 1,600Nearly
1,800
Greenhouse Gas Inventory (Scope 1 and Scope 2 Emissions)
 20182017201620152014
Scope 1 emissions (metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e))20,537,71020,148,91019,664,62218,731,06217,784,227
Scope 2 emissions (metric tons of CO2e) 46,97251,63453,26448,81051,228
Total Scope 1 and Scope 2 GHG emissions (metric tons of CO2e)20,584,68220,200,54419,717,88618,779,87217,835,455
Intensity ratio (metric tons CO2e/1,000 RPMs)66) An RPM is one paying Passenger flown one mile. Also referred to as “traffic,” which is a measure of demand for a given period.0.1540.1570.1580.1600.165
Intensity ratio (metric tons CO2e/1,000 ASMs)77) An available seat mile (ASM) is one seat (empty or full) flown one mile. Also referred to as “capacity,” which is a measure of the space available to carry Passengers in a given period.0.1290.1310.1330.1340.136
Intensity ratio (metric tons CO2e/1,000 RTMs) 1.531.551.561.581.63
Greenhouse Gas Inventory (Scope 3 Emissions)
 20182017201620152014
Capital goods—production of aircraft (metric tons CO2e)68,50062,90043,60026,50053,000
Waste generated in operations—waste to landfill and burned for energy recovery (metric tons CO2e)2,1001,9002,7002,4004,600
Employee commuting—estimate based on survey (metric tons CO2e)223,600214,200218,600183,600174,000
Other Air Emissions
 20182017201620152014
NOx emissions (tons)3838) NOx and SOx emissions are reported in our annual emissions inventories for our DAL and PHX facilities. Data is from prior year due to air emissions reporting cycle.6.87.17.17.1
SOx emissions (tons)3838) NOx and SOx emissions are reported in our annual emissions inventories for our DAL and PHX facilities. Data is from prior year due to air emissions reporting cycle.0.70.70.70.7
Regulatory Compliance
 20182017201620152014
Number of environmental violations resulting in finesNoneNone163
Total environmental fines $ — $ — $ 3,303$ 7,497$ 5,738
Environmental Conservation
 20182017201620152014
Fuel efficiency (ASMs/gallon) 76.375.274.473.972.8
Fuel efficiency (RPMs/gallon) 63.763.162.561.860.0
Fuel efficiency (RTMs/gallon)6.46.46.36.36.1
Total number of electric
Ground Support Equipment (GSE)3939) Definition has been revised to count only electric Ground Support Equipment (GSE) where there is a fossil-fueled alternative. Total numbers of electric Ground Support Equipment for 2014 through 2017 have been revised to reflect the revised definition.
1,3041,2151,1381,074914
Purchases of renewable energy certificates (kWh)4040) Purchases of renewable energy certificates (kWh) has been revised based on review of renewable energy certificate records for 2017.More than 25 millionMore than 25 millionMore than 25 millionMore than 25 millionMore than 25 million
Waste Management & Recycling4141) Waste and material recycled from aircraft and select facilities as part of Southwest’s waste management and co-mingled recycling programs. Does not include international flights due to regulations that require waste from international flights to be incinerated. Does not include AirTran flights.
 20182017201620152014
Total waste generated (tons) 10,5999,8589,69011,135
Total waste recycled (tons) 3,7573,7373,3484,148
Percent of total waste recycled 35383537
Recycled co-mingled waste—paper, plastic, aluminum, and cardboard (tons)Nearly 3,000More than 3,000More than 2,600More than 3,700More than 3,000
Recycled industrial waste (tons) 568730721631520
Hazardous waste generated (tons) 29.221.624.125.116.5
Hazardous waste managed through recycling and beneficial reuse (tons)20.617.216.118.912.4
Intensity ratio (pounds of hazardous waste generated/aircraft)7861677150