In 2020, the airline announced its plans to go carbon neutral including purchasing carbon credits for conserving at-risk natural landscapes like rainforests, wetlands, and grasslands.
But a new class-action lawsuit claims that Delta’s statement of carbon neutrality is false as it relies on useless offsets that do not actually help the earth or mitigate climate change.
The lawsuit argues that there is a premium Delta has been charging its customers for this green claim and misleading their flyers to believe they do not have to worry about the impact of their flight.
It even goes on to allege that customers would not have even purchased the tickets without believing the neutrality claim.
Carbon neutrality is a contentious issue among businesses as many will buy credits from companies that claim they offset emissions by planting trees or preserving vegetation.
But the exact match to offset impacts is hard to measure and does not showcase progress in companies committing to changing their current practices to help the environment as a whole.
In January 2023, an investigation by several publications found Verra Rainforest Credits used by Disney, Shell, Gucci, and other big corporations were ineffective, based on stopping the destruction of rainforests that weren’t actually threatened.
Verra claims the investigation is false and based on inconsistencies in academic studies, but it will still scrap its current rainforest protection program by 2025 and introduce new rules for its offsets.