Southwest Airlines






2702 Love Field Dr.
Dallas, TX
Tel: 1-800-425-9792
Fax: N/A
Email: N/A



  • #11 Best Employers for Veteran 2020
  • #27 World’s Best Employers for 2020
  • America’s Best Employers By State 2020
  • #190 Best Employers for Women 2020
  • #482 Global 2000 2020 
  • #74 Best Employer for Diversity 2020
  • #2 America’s Best Employer 2019 
  • #111 America’s Largest Public Companies 2018 
  • #220 Top Regarded Companies 2017




Elaine Karnes


  • Domestic Airline of the Year – Airforwarders Association 
  • Ranked 11th FORTUNE World’s Most Admired Companies
  • 2020 Military Friendly Company – Victory Media 
  • Top 50 Employer – Equal Opportunity Magazine 
  • 100 on the Corporate Equality Index in 2019
  • Best Place to Work 2020 – Glassdoor
  • Airline Representative of the Year – ARC
  • Partner of the Yearby EcoRise.



Report created by Ajith Thangavelautham

Southwest Airlines

SECTIONS :  Sustainability    Evaluation  •  Progress  •  Watch  •  Overview

Company Activity

Southwest is a passenger airline company that operates in the U.S. states, District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Mexico, Jamaica, The Bahamas, Aruba, Dominican Republic, Costa Rica, Belize, Cuba, the Cayman Islands, and Turks and Caicos.

The company was founded in 1967 by Rollin W. King and Herbert D. Helleher and is headquartered in Dallas, TX. 

There have been four deaths under Southwest Airlines: “one accidental passenger death inflight, two non-passenger deaths on the ground, and one passenger death from injuries he sustained when subdued by other passengers while attempting to break into the cockpit of an aircraft.”

Southwest has had nine aircraft accidents. In 2012, Southwest was considered one of the top ten safest airlines.

Company Sustainability Activity

Southwest has declared their commitment to sustainability in the following statement: 

“Our Purpose and Vision drive us to do right by the environment and respect their natural resources. As part of those efforts, there is a continued focus on developing and maintaining a sustainable supply chain. they are proud of their accomplishments to date and strive for even more. they know doing the right thing is about being good environmental stewards, and what is good for their business is also good for their Planet.”


  • In 2019, they recycled 2,426 tons of material, an effort that directly reduces their impact on landfills.
  • Southwest has invested more than $620 million in fuel efficiency improvements since 2002.
  • Through their fuel and ight planning initiatives, they saved over 7 million gallons of fuel in 2019.
  • In 2019, they recycled or refurbished more than 247 tons of electronic waste
  • Since 2016, they have upcycled over 1 million pounds of leather seat covers.
  • In 2019, they donated 3,628 tickets through their Tickets for Time program.


Southwest Airlines does not disclose any targets related to sustainability at the moment.


  • Improved jet fuel efficiency by nearly 50 percent on a revenue ton basis since 2000.
  • Southwest has committed to purchase three million gallons of sustainable aviation fuel per year from Red Rock Biofuels when it becomes available.

Energy & Conservation 

  • Installation of lighting control systems that automatically shut-off of facility lighting
    systems when not in use
  • Meeting LEED® standards at many new facilities
  • Forming a LEED® focus group for the Love Field Airport Modernization Plan in Dallas
  • Where feasible, purchasing their power from renewable energy sources
  • Participating in the Environmental Protection Agency’s Green Power Partnership Program by entering into a 60-month agreement with Reliant Energy to purchase 30 percent green e-certified renewable energy credits for their Dallas and Houston operations.

Employee Involvement 

  • Implementation of a robust, Companywide co-mingled recycling program
  • Participating on committees to help identify areas of their operations where emissions can be reduced 
  • Development of Employee outreach programs on environmental issues so individual Southwest Employees can reduce their personal environmental footprints
  • Development of external outreach programs to support Employee volunteerism addressing environmental issues
  • Encouraging alternative transportation options where Southwest operates, including the investigation of Employee commuter programs
  • Implementing “Green Tuesdays,” which provide tips each week to Employees on how to live and work green
  •  Development of a Green Ambassador program in each individual city Southwest serves to foster Environmental Stewardship


Southwest Airlines does not hold any certificates related to sustainability at the moment.


United Nations Sustainable Development Goals

United Nations SDGs Compliance

The following section aligns current company-wide sustainability initiatives with the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Although not explicitly stated, Southwest has attempted to be compliant with  SDGs.

SDG 8 

  • Southwest and Arise Veteran Foundation, a Repurpose with Purpose Partner, are proud to work together with Help Heal Veterans to assist those who served.

SDG 10 

  • Launched a quarterly event series called Inclusion in Action in 2019. Each event featured a speaker who addressed important topics related to inclusion and answered questions about how to practically enact change.
  • Demonstrated inclusion through collective conversations during Women’s History Month, Veterans Day, and at their annual Inclusion and Innovation Summit. The goal is to create the most impact and continue to evolve on their inclusion journey. 

SDG 11

  • Made up of volunteers at their Headquarters campus, the Green Team meets monthly to plan environmental initiatives and discuss emerging trends and topics related to environmental sustainability.

SDG 12

  • Limiting e-waste: their Heart for the Planet prompts us to try to always do more with less—preserving their Planet’s nite natural resources and minimizing the amount of waste they generate.

SDG 13

  • Committed to purchase three million gallons of sustainable aviation fuel per year once it becomes available.
  • Helping reduce the number of peak load generation plants that have to be built.

SDG 17

  • Southwest supported more than 40 conservation projects nationwide in 2019, in partnership with the Student Conservation Association (SCA).
  • Continue to collaborate with various organizations as they work toward their environmental goals and focus areas.

Southwest has received many awards and listings. The airline is well rated and sought after by employees and customers. Southwest has not explicitly stated any SDGs or specific targets for the company to achieve. To increase the company’s rating, Southwest should create a detailed annual report that covers all aspects of sustainability.

Therefore, Southwest is given a C rating.

Analyst Outlook Negative

Southwest is off to a solid start, but still has a ways to go before they can be deemed a sustainable company. They should improve alignment with the UN SDGs, receive sustainability certificates and improve their transparency by setting and meeting clear targets.

Key Points

  • Many positive reviews: long list of awards and listing 
  • No certifications
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