Bottled Water Offered on AirTran Flights Touted as Green

Icelandic GlacialAirTran is a budget airline that you’re most likely familiar with for popping up on all the flight promo aggregators online. Today, they made an interesting announcement. They will feature the world’s first Carbon Neutral water.

Carbon Neutral water you say? Yes, starting today, passengers on AirTran flights will get treated to bottles of Icelandic Glacial, water made with fully recyclable PET plastic from a Carbon Neutral certified bottler in Iceland.

Citing an AirTran press release, “Icelandic Glacial is a pioneer in water with environmentally responsible consumer products including industry leading Carbon Neutral certified bottled water, great taste, exceptional Icelandic purity, fully recyclable PET bottle sizes, and award winning bottle design.”

“The unique packaging coupled with the exceptional taste of the Icelandic Glacial water and the environmentally responsible product will be a hit with our customers,” said Tad Hutcheson, vice president of marketing and sales for AirTran Airways.

According to its website—which features two Icelandic beauties, suggesting the water is as pure and exquisite as they are (picture above)—the company claims sources its product from a “naturally replenished catchment zone” from glacial runoff. All of its operations and transportation footprints are offset, and the company’s production is powered by geothermal and hydroelectric energy.

Named Best Water of 2007 by industry group BevNET, some analysts say that companies like Icelandic Glacial will make the glacier-rich state prosperous.

However, as we read stories about bottled water bans in cities and ad campaigns filled with anti-tobacco-esque ire, what does an “eco-friendly” bottled water really mean? Despite its recyclability, do companies like this only contribute to our unsustainable culture of consumption? Does purchasing carbon offsets discount the fact that water is traveling thousands of miles from the depths of Icelandic glaciers to get to consumers in the US and the UK? Or does a company like this need to be applauded for examining all the aspects of its environmental footprint and seeking to find sustainable solutions for them?

Readers, tell us what you think.

Ashwin is an Associate Editor of Triple Pundit. He recently returned to the Bay Area after living in Argentina, where he wholeheartedly missed the Pacific Ocean. He is a freelance editor and media and marketing consultant.After a brief stint working in the wine world, when not staring blankly at a computer screen, you'll find him working on Anand Confections or at 826 Valencia, where he has been a long-time volunteer.