Vertis Aviation, the Switzerland-based boutique charter company, is introducing a new carbon offset programme which commits to offsetting 100% of carbon emissions generated by charter flights it arranges. The programme, named VA Footprints, ensures that customers on each charter flight, no matter its route or distance, will have the associated greenhouse gas emissions offset at no expense to them. Vertis will pay the full carbon credit amount, on behalf of the customer, to demonstrate its commitment to a lower carbon aviation future, and the importance it gives to the growing climate crisis.
VA Footprints is launching at the beginning of March when all arranged charters will fall under the scheme. “We know the aviation industry is committed to reducing its carbon footprint but as concerns about climate change grow private aviation continues to garner attention for the amount of CO2 emissions it generates. We recognize we are part of the problem and want to take a step, albeit small, towards being part of the solution,” said Catherine Buchanan, COO Vertis Aviation.
Vertis is taking an innovative approach by varying the organisations it will contribute funds to. “We have decided to choose a different project each month. This gives us the opportunity to make sure the donations are directed towards real issues that correlate to our client movements. For example, we often fly clients in and around South America and know that unimaginable amounts of the rain forest are currently being destroyed, so would select a Brazilian carbon offset project focused on reforestation. Our business has always been client driven, this is just an extension of that philosophy,” explains Buchanan. “This is an essential time for the future of the planet, we cannot wait until every aircraft is flying SAF, or being electrically propelled. The problem is clear and present, and we want to do something immediately. We believe the issue is more important than just signing up to a carbon offsetting organisation and that funds should be directed to projects that are making a difference now,” reiterates Buchanan.
To support the initiative Vertis will issue a monthly newsletter detailing the projects receiving funding, the reasons for selection, and the amount of metric tonnes of carbon emissions offset each month will also be issued. A new eye catching, double-leaf logo will highlight the scheme as Vertis encourages clients to make an additional contribution, as well as offset emissions each and every time they fly. “We want to make our customers think about this issue. We know they need executive aviation to support their business, but we want them to be aware of its negative environmental impact, and what they can do to reduce it. Our customers are invariably powerful and influential people, so we ask them to influence others to make a difference too.”
Vertis has taken inspiration for VA Footprints from fellow industry professionals including Farnborough Airport which operates carbon neutrally and the industry’s Sustainable Aviation Fuel coalition which aims to tackle the challenge of sourcing, delivering and uplifting SAF. “These leading companies have motivated us, and we hope that our initiative will stimulate industry colleagues to follow our footprints,” concluded Buchanan.