Most of the 4-year-old 737’s cabin has been revamped in an eco-friendly fashion, replacing old textiles with more sustainable materials – like 100% recycled carpeting made from a completely carbon-neutral process. Heavy, canvas life vests have been switched with lighter versions, and aluminum seat parts phased out for plastic. Instead of regular leather seat covers, PETA-ns will love the new faux alternatives, which are man-made and twice as durable. The changes have lightened the plane an average 5 pounds per seat, which, though a fraction of its remaining multi-ton weight, is significant in light of other company-wide initiatives, like banning Styrofoam cups, and using a chemical-free engine cleaner that has zero runoff and reduces fuel burn. Plus, November 1 marks the kickoff of the airline’s new onboard recycling program, after nearly 2 years in the making.
Southwest will “test fly” the green plane’s new digs on multiple flights to see how customers respond and the changes hold up – we’re hoping this will set the precedent for an airline industry that finds it’s easy being green!