Australian carriers Qantas and Jetstar have been officially given carbon neutral certification.

The recognition comes via the Australian Government and its new National Carbon Offset Standard (aka NCOS) initiative. The two airlines were recognised for their successful carbon offset schemes and are among the first companies to receive the recognition.

Australian Carbon Trust chief executive Meg McDonald said that both carriers give customers the option to offset emissions from their bookings. She added that these programmes are very convenient and effective methods available to the flying public for addressing environmental issues. She said that it was important that consumers have such options, which create better awareness in regards to climate change.

Rob Kella, risk officer for Qantas Group, said that the offset schemes come as a part of the company’s wider comprehensive strategy regarding environmental awareness. He said that both of the company’s brands had launched the programs in 2007 and since then it has resulted in the offsetting of some 850,000 tonnes of carbon emissions, which he said was equal to reducing the number of cars on the road by 200,000 every year.

Mr Kella concluded by saying that his organisation would remain committed to the reduction of its carbon footprint and improving overall fuel efficiency and would continue to work with industry and government bodies to find sustainable aviation fuel sources.