British Airways has made it to the world of making aircrafts of the world.2 Emissions.
Willie Walsh, chief executive of BA's parent company IAG, accepted the method – called "fuel tankering" within the industry – was "maybe the wrong thing to do" despite its environmental impact.
Critics said the general use of fuel tankering called into question airlines' commitment to their impact on the environment.
The information of excessive fuel travel came from a BA insider during a BBC Panorama investigation.
IAG recently tried to burnish its environmental credentials with a commitment to becoming a global airline.
However, documents seen by the BBC showed a recent BA flight to Italy took over costs of just $ 40 but that meant an additional 600kg of CO2 was emitted.
Speaking to analysts last week, Walsh said BA often did fuel tankering in order to save money, citing the example of Glasgow airport where jet fuel is 25% more expensive than at Heathrow.
However, Walsh said BA was now considering its position on the practice. "We continue to do tankering today. We're challenging that, we're recommending that we be sustainable, and that we should be pricing in the environmental impact of that.
"Clearly the financial savings incentivizes us to do tankering. But maybe that's the wrong thing to do. "
BA said that its fuel tankering generates 18,000 tons of additional CO2 per year – less than 0.1% of its overall emissions – and that accounts for 2% of tankering in Europe.
A report from Eurocontrol, which gives a total of € 265m (£ 229m) to the cost of an additional 901,000 tonnes of CO2.
John Sauven, Greenpeace UK's executive director said it was a "classic example of a company putting profit before planet … they'll happily get extra fuel on the fire for a small boost to their profit margin."
Meanwhile, a climate expert described a carbon offsetting scheme offered to customers by Ryanair as "woefully inadequate". Passengers can pay a voluntary € 1 donation when booking.
Simon Lewis, Professor of Global Change Science at University College London, said that it would offset 0.01% of the airline's emissions. He said: "To me, that's a green gimmick."
Michael O'Leary, Ryanair chief executive, told Panorama: "From little acorns grow mighty trees."
(TagsToTranslate) British Airways (t) Greenhouse gas emissions (t) Airline industry (t) Climate change (t) Business (t) Travel & leisure (t) UK news (t) BBC (t) Environment (t) Carbon offsetting (t) Transport