Sri Lankan Airlines won the distinguished Best Aviation Sustainability Award, beating 118 other submissions at the recently ended Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum (SMBR) Global Aviation Awards for its innovative signature upcycle project, ‘Mathaka.’ Project Mathaka was Sri Lankan Airlines’ answer to reducing its addition to landfill waste and ecological footprint by reusing the airline’s scrap material into a range of lifestyle products.
Sri Lankan collaborated with House of Lonali, a Sri Lankan organization that designs and manufactures upcycled lifestyle products, to produce an exclusive variety of products under the ‘Mathaka’ brand including travel bags; wallets; books; key tags; and jewellery. The products made completely from discarded airline uniforms, aircraft interior elements and other materials will in due course be introduced for sale onboard Sri Lankan Airlines’ flights and through the website and retail partners of House of Lonali. All profits from the project will go toward funding the airline’s other corporate sustainability initiatives.
The project permits the airline to take its planet-friendly corporate philosophy a step further by modifying waste into new items, consequently lessening landfill waste and environmental pollution. Furthermore, successful waste management from upcycling provides a practical solution in this age of economic scarcity and shortage of raw materials by expanding the use of waste materials in a sustainable way.
Moreover, Sri Lankan will be empowering women through its project partner, House of Lonali, which is also a social entrepreneurial journey concentrating on offering employment chances to skilled women from low-income communities. Individuals hired by House of Lonali across the production procedure of Project Mathaka will be empowered to display their talent at a global level and earn a living at the same time.
The SMRB Global Aviation Awards were handed out at the 41st General Assembly of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) in Montreal, Canada. Set up in 2016, the SMRB Global Aviation Awards aims to acknowledge the contributions of business organizations and individuals to the success of the global aviation industry. The evaluation procedure and winner selection are headed by a global team of strategic partners.
Project Mathaka is one of many initiatives taken by the Environmental Affairs and Sustainability team of the airline towards supporting the environment in regular and influential methods. Sri Lankan was the first airline in Asia to present ‘Planet Friendly Flights’ back in 2009 and was titled the second lowest carbon emitting airline in the Asia-Pacific in 2016 by Business Traveller.
Partnership with like-minded partners and being part of the solution is the only way to fight against climate change. As a pioneer in the area of aviation sustainability, the airline through its Environmental Affairs and Sustainability team, constantly tries to produce an eco-friendly attitude among its people. The community is frequently combined into its projects, and the airline is hopeful that small steps will lead to greater accomplishment in terms of sustainability in the long run.