Environment

in Fact sheets

Carbon emissions

Direct (Scope 1) Emissions
2017metric tons CO2e 2016metric tons CO2e 2015metric tons CO2e
Direct (Scope 1) emissions 32,429,263 31,447,052 31,446,166
Mainline aircraft (conventional fuel) 32,269,841 31,282,902 31,279,288
Mainline aircraft (biofuel)1 3,822 10,237 0
Mainline vehicles (diesel, gasoline, CNG, LPG) 69,104 78,196 78,315
Facilities (natural gas combustion, engine test cells) 83,100 72,486 88,563
Dry ice from catering 3,397 3,231 Not reported
Indirect (Scope 2) emissions
2017metric tons CO2e 2016metric tons CO2e 2015metric tons CO2e
Indirect (Scope 2) emissions 331,527 291,543 283,499
Electricity consumption 323,889 291,543 283,499
Steam consumption 7,637 Not reported Not reported
Other Indirect (Scope 3) Emissions
2017metric tons CO2e 2016metric tons CO2e 2015metric tons CO2e
Other Indirect (Scope 3) emissions 6,079,488 6,268,793 6,474,314
Regional aircraft (jet fuel) 5,977,955 6,157,267 6,472,504
Regional vehicles (diesel, gasoline, CNG, LPG) 1,784 1,847 1,809
Ownership stakes in other companies 99,750 109,678 Not reported
Other Indirect (Scope 3) Emissions
2017metric tons CO2e 2016metric tons CO2e 2015metric tons CO2e
Revenue ton-mile (RTMs – millions)2 24,796 23,540 23,133
Metric tons CO2e/1,000 RTMs2 1.321 1.348 1.372
Available seat-miles (ASMs)3 262,386 253,590 250,004
Metric tons CO2e/1,000 ASMs3 147.6 149.4 152.8
Energy consumption
2017 2016 2015
Aircraft (Mainline jet fuel – millions of gallons) 3,357 3,261 3,216
Aircraft (regional jet fuel – millions of gallons) 621 643 670
Electricity (MWh) 734,864 616,396 561,586
Natural gas (MM BTUs) 1,475,467 1,279,545 1,579,085

Local air quality

NOx Emissions
2017tons NOx 2016tons NOx 2015tons NOx
NOx emissions 15,078 17,881 13,139
Mainline aircraft (jet fuel) 14,143 16,823 11,988
Vehicles (diesel, gasoline, CNG, LPG) 814 946 1,022
Facilities (Natural gas combustion, engine test cells) 121 111 129
SO2 emissions
2017tons SO2 2016tons SO2 2015tons SO2
SO2 emissions 1,367 1,598 1,173
Mainline aircraft (jet fuel) 1,366 1,597 1,172
Facilities (Natural gas combustion, engine test cells) 1 1 1
CO emissions
2017tons CO 2016tons CO 2015tons CO
CO emissions 9,412 11,034 9,164
Mainline aircraft (jet fuel) 7,478 9,058 6,370
Vehicles (diesel, gasoline, CNG, LPG) 1,870 1,918 2,724
Facilities (Natural gas combustion, engine test cells) 63 58 70
Waste management
2017metric tons 2016metric tons 2015metric tons
Waste – total 63,986 41,786 43,756
Hazardous and non-hazardous waste generation 36,874 16,729
Catering – Municipal waste 27,112 25,057
Hazardous Moved to new category Moved to new category 2,565
Non-hazardous/other waste Moved to new category Moved to new category 41,191
Recycling – total 10,307 7,302 14,942
Non-catering – recycled 6,618 4,093 12,840
Catering – recycled 3,689 3,209 2,102
Water consumption
2017millions of gallons 2016millions of gallons 2015millions of gallons
Billed water consumption4 493 453 343

Footnotes

  1. United's biofuel use stayed approximately the same in 2017 as 2016, however, accounted emissions decreased as United's AltAir supplier achieved certification for their lifecycle emissions reduction
  2. Scope 1+2 emissions/Mainline RTMs; metric used for tracking progress against industry goal of 1.5%/year efficiency improvement
  3. Scope 1+2+3 Regional emissions/Mainline+Regional ASMs; metric used for tracking progress against Global Performance Commitment
  4. Does not account for all United locations or locations shared with other businesses (e.g., terminals) and as a result may change considerably from year to year

Totals may not add up due to rounding.