So NWA put together a task force that includes 60 "front-line" employees and managers, representing 11 departments. They gathered more than 300 ideas from across the company on ways to become more fuel efficient, evaluated each idea in terms of cost, safety, etc., and recommended procedures that could save up to 31 million gallons of fuel each year to an executive committee. Some examples:
- Remove unused folding tables from the galleys of the 757-200 aircraft.
- Add winglets to the 757-200 to increase fuel efficiency and the distance the aircraft can cover in a single trip.
- Accelerate the retirement of the DC-10 (a plane NWA has been flying since 1972) and replace them with new Airbus A330, a 30 percent more efficient aircraft.
- Develop lighter interior materials and equipment. For example, new serving carts are 22 pounds lighter, which can add up to a savings of 1,560 pounds on larger aircraft.
- Change the way DC-9s are pushed away from the gate, saving about 180,000 gallons of fuel per year.
Photo credit: Northwest Airlines