DALLAS, July 15, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Southwest Airlines (NYSE: LUV) announced today the launch of LUV Seat: Repurpose with Purpose, a global sustainability initiative to upcycle 43 acres of used leather seat coverings into new products that will benefit communities by providing employment, skills training, and donated products. For more information on the project, visit www.swamedia.com/luvseat or visit Nuts About Southwest to read the blog post here. LUV Seat: Repurpose with Purpose was developed following the Company's Evolve program, a large-scale redesign of all 737-700 aircraft, a portion of its 737-300 fleet, and is now standard on all new planes. The Evolve program replaced the leather seat covers and other interior elements with environmentally friendly materials. Through this redesign, Southwest reduced the weight of each aircraft by more than 600 pounds. LUV Seat is an innovative upcycling project born from the Evolve program. By donating the used leather for social impact and keeping it out of landfills, Southwest Airlines is reinforcing its commitment to long-term global sustainable business operations and positioning itself as a leader in corporate responsibility. "The Evolve redesign was a major milestone in supporting our sustainability goals," said Bill Tiffany, Vice President Supply Chain Management at Southwest Airlines. "But we didn't want to stop there - with the pilot of LUV Seat in Nairobi, Malawi, and the United States, we're embarking on a new vision of social impact through training, job creation, and ultimately product donation. We look forward to identifying additional partners through a call to action, using the hashtag #LUVSEAT, for our Employees, Customers, and the general public to share their ideas of how we should upcycle the remaining leather." These initiatives are the first phase of a multi-year campaign to re-use Southwest's leather through upcycling projects around the world. The project partners aim to better people's lives and raise industry standards for the environment and communities in which they operate.
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