Swiss aviation fuel supplier Valcora is offering business jet operators the chance to help save endangered species and contribute to reforestation efforts through a new wildlife conservation initiative announced at the show.
The company has handpicked two rhinoceros orphanages in South Africa, as well as chimpanzee and orangutan refuges in Africa and Indonesia, to include in a conservation portfolio that its customers can voluntarily pay to support when they purchase their fuel.
Valcora chief executive Daniel Coetzer tells Flight Evening News that he hopes to raise $300,000-400,000 a year through the initiative, which he says "goes a long way in places like Africa and Indonesia".
Customers who choose to join the programme can decide how much they wish to donate – for example, one cent for every gallon of fuel purchased – and also which specific project the money is channelled to. They then receive regular updates and photographs from their chosen charity, as well as a certificate and even the chance to adopt one of the rescued animals.
"It's their choice how much they contribute and which project they support. As a company, we will also make our own contributions," says Coetzer.
In addition to the conservation projects chosen so far – which will be closely monitored to ensure the money raised is being used effectively – Valcora is planning to add reforestation projects and charities seeking to protect pangolins to its portfolio. Pangolins are being hunted to the point of extinction and are the most heavily trafficked mammal in the world. The scales that cover their bodies are used in Chinese medicine.
"We would like to put awareness out there so people know which animals are in danger," says Coetzer.
Valcora believes the initiative is in line with the business aviation industry's efforts to become carbon neutral. The company also has a programme to encourage customers to use sustainable aviation fuel, but biofuel is in short supply and has yet to be scaled up to commercially viable levels.
Coetzer believes that investing in reforestation projects to soak up some of the carbon dioxide that is in the atmosphere can "address the gap" and help the aviation industry reduce its impact on climate change.
Source: Flight Daily News