Easyjet CEO Johan Lundgren visited our offices in Edinburgh recently where we took the opportunity to push for the company to offer carbon offsetting to its customer base. Aside from helping to combat global warming we believe there is a sound economic rationale for adopting such an approach. As the growing public concern over aircraft emissions has the very real danger of curbing demand for air travel in the coming years as travelers seek more environmentally friendly modes of transport, it is inevitable that those companies which adopt a proactive approach to the issue are most likely to thrive. Easyjet introduced carbon offsetting back in 2007 but withdrew the offer as there was insufficient demand. To help overcome this we have suggested that offsetting becomes the default option when booking with an opt-out for those who are opposed. This would put the company well ahead of competitors and help reduce the environmental risk premium we apply to this industry. Easyjet say they are working hard on their environmental positioning and we can realistically see this happening within the next 12-18 months. We are also shareholders in Wizz Air where we have made a similar request and it will be interesting to see who acts first.
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