Southwest builds first 'green plane,' Ma Earth shows her gratitude

Southwest Airlines may not own a plane with a headrest infotainment system, but it's still far and away the most enjoyable commercial flight you'll find in the US of A (save for Virgin America, naturally). Granted, we'd like to see in-flight WiFi offered on a few more of its flights (read: 100 percent of them), but hey, we'll take free checked bags and friendly employees any day of the week. We'll also take fuel savings and environment stewardship, both of which Southwest is aiming to give us by creating the planet's first "green plane." By utilizing recyclable InterfaceFLOR carpet, weight-saving seat covers and life vest pouches, a lighter foam fill in the seats and aluminum (as opposed to plastic) seat rub strips, the newfangled Boeing 737-700 ends up some 472 pounds lighter than a conventional one. The savings? 9,500 gallons of jet fuel per year. We're not sure when the bird is expected to take her first voyage, but here's hoping a few others are hatched in the near future.

[Via DailyFinance]

Read - Southwest press release
Read - China View's fuel calculations