Coronavirus Crisis Update: Scott Kirby, United Airlines “Perhaps This Is the End of the Beginning”

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By CSIS Global Health Policy Center | Center for Strategic and International Studies, CSIS Global Health Policy Center | Center for Strategic, and International Studies. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

We were delighted to join this week with Scott Kirby, the CEO of United Airlines. The impact of the pandemic upon the airline industry has been “devastating,” the worst in its history. Luckily, bipartisan broad-based support for the industry – contained in the CARES Act and the December $900 B emergency measure – has preserved this critical infrastructure. Variants are a stark threat: “We’re giving the virus a large playing field upon which to mutate, for variants to become more deadly, more transmissible, or to evade vaccines.” United is actively working with partners to develop vaccine passports: passports are “the key not just to reopening borders and travel, but to reopening segments of the economy that have been closed.” “It is the right thing to do to make vaccines mandatory” though United has not yet taken that step. 1,000 passengers who refused masks have been banned from flying on United. Immediately after the January 6 violent insurrection against the Capitol, United took several “tactical steps” in its flights in and out of Washington. Decarbonization remains a personal passion. United has joined the world’s largest “air capture and carbon sequestration” project and led the industry in biofuels.

Scott Kirby became the CEO of United Airlines in May of 2020. From 2016-2020, he was United’s President.

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