However, the airline company has created an innovative sustainable fuels partnership with LanzaTech which is a cleantech company and collaborated with Natural Capital Partners to offset carbon emission. Virgin Atlantic has a future development scope by reducing carbon emission by 30% by 2020 (Virgin Atlantic, 2017). Some developments that would help Virgin to reduce carbon emission are welcoming 787s to their fleets and making an investment in efficient future aircraft which is 12 A350s by 2019.
Virgin Atlantic has scaled up to new fuel by processing ethanol (which is a result of a conversion of carbon monoxide gas) that will be used to alter the aviation infrastructure (Virgin, 2017). This new fuel will reduce CO2 emissions by 65% as compared to kerosene. With the reduction in carbon emissions, environmental pollution will be reduced. As a result, the principle of sustainable development such as environmental protection and integration of environment and economic decisions can be facilitated. Thus the disharmony between tourism, environment and sustainable development can be addressed effectively (Virgin Atlantic, 2016).
Over the years, marketing was considered to be an antithesis of sustainable tourism however with the changes in the market conditions; it is now recognized as the cause of sustainable tourism. As compared to other airlines, Virgin Atlantic has a strong and positive environmental image. The sustainable marketing method that is currently used by Virgin Atlantic is green marketing communications which reinforce the environmental commitment of the company to investment in environmental initiatives. Virgin Atlantic aims to achieve the reduction in carbon emission by 2020 through the measures such as higher loader factors, new aircraft, air traffic management efficiencies, new technologies, operational and maintenance and lower carbon sustainable biofuels. Virgin Atlantic believes in top-down approach which is facilitated by top-level management and their sustainable marketing communication underpins the linking of the service to a tangible person. In the case of sustainable marketing, Virgin Atlantic highlights branding as the key element to differentiate from its competitors and engages in different PR techniques in order to promote and market its green credentials (Mayer, Ryley and Gillingwater, 2014).