The new American Airlines Admirals Club template is gorgeous. The first one to open was on the E Concourse at Washington National airport. There’s now a second club using the new design template at Newark.
Every piece on the new DC lounge highlights the fireplace feature of the lounge. It helps make the space.
However American Airlines has shut off the fireplace in the lounge.
Staff there tell me that they were told the fireplace had to be turned off “because of emissions.” American Airlines is literally the world’s largest airline, burning jet fuel all day, and they’ve turned off the fireplace to be sustainable?
The carrier tells me that “as we are in the warmer months of the year” except the policy change requiring the shut down of the fireplace seems to have gone into effect in September. American says, though, that they “will be turning on our fireplace once more during the cooler months of the year.”
Ultimately, virtue signaling over the environment shouldn’t take precedence over doing things that actually address environmental problems. American’s efforts working with Google using data for contrail avoidance is actually meaningful. Most of the environmental impact of flying comes from a small portion of trips and can be avoided by changes in altitude. United is investing in direct carbon capture. Environmental problems are real, and deserve serious solutions, not cosmetic changes or cost reductions using the environment as a fig leaf.
With the big investments that American is making in its new clubs (albeit fewer clubs than they should be, and more slowly) it’s a shame to undermine the experience with cuts so soon.