A spokesperson clarified that Swift wasn’t on most of the flights.
A new report crowned Taylor Swift as the celebrity whose private jet took the most flights this year, a revelation that both seemingly clashed with the perception of Swift as an eco-friendly celebrity and launched dozens of memes into the sky.
The report, published on July 29, came from Yard, a marketing firm focused on sustainability, and the report was partly sparked by the recent backlash against Kylie Jenner and Travis Scott for joking about which of their private jets they should take for a flight, along with Jenner using her private jet to take extremely short flights instead of driving. For critics, the issue with Jenner’s frequent private jet usage was the vast amount of carbon emissions generated from those flights, leaving a much bigger carbon footprint than the average person.
Yard obtained the data for its study from the @CelebJets, a bot Twitter account that posts whenever a celebrity’s private jet takes off and lands—and stats like how many gallons of fuel were used and the flight’s carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions—data which is obtained from ADS-B Exchange. And by looking at the flights taken between Jan. 1 and July 19, 2022, Yard determined that Swift was the worst celebrity offender. (Scott landed at number 10 while Jenner ranked 19th on Yard’s list.)
“Taylor Swift might be today’s pop princess, but Yard’s research found that Miss Swift is the biggest celebrity CO2e polluter of this year so far,” the report stated. “Racking up a total of 170 flights since January, Taylor’s jet has amassed a vast 22,923 minutes in the air—15.9 days. Quite a large amount considering that she is not currently touring.”
Swift’s representatives pushed back at the notion that Swift was directly responsible for all 170 flights this year.
“Taylor’s jet is loaned out regularly to other individuals,” a Swift spokesperson told Rolling Stone. “To attribute most or all of these trips to her is blatantly incorrect.”
An updated version of Yard’s post included a disclaimer (which wasn’t in the original report) acknowledging the statement from Swift’s rep and noted that “whilst there is no way to determine if these celebrities were on all the recorded flights the purpose of this study is to highlight the damaging impact of private jet usage.”
Since the report’s release, people have found a source of amusement in imagining exaggerated examples of Swift (and sometimes other celebrities like Jenner or the Kardashians) using a private jet for trivial matters, often accompanied by GIFs or photos of planes.
taylor swift listening to all too well on her private jet pic.twitter.com/XnM1NFPlMi
— benjamin ᱬ (@mylifelessframe) July 30, 2022
taylor swift carrying her carbon emissions pic.twitter.com/tPEOwvuSP0
— eric⌕ (@ericvar96) July 30, 2022
Taylor Swift on her way to the fridge for a midnight snack pic.twitter.com/KeqT7rqxl2
— Tyler 🌮 (@tytacobell) July 30, 2022
taylor swift’s driveway pic.twitter.com/IujgRKTsfn
— Andrew Strauss (@straussanator) July 30, 2022
Taylor Swift, Kim K and Kylie seeing who can get to Starbucks first pic.twitter.com/MmOqe2pMIu
— Bob (@tweetsbybob_) July 30, 2022
🚨 @TaylorSwift13 announces NEW album titled ‘Carbon Footprint:- A Long Private Jet Journey’ dropping at midnight. 💿
The lead single "Emission" is out now. pic.twitter.com/8UrVxlHUUn
— ak🦋🧣 (@duaswillow) July 30, 2022
taylor swift saying she wants to run away to the lakes and live out the rest of her life surrounded by nature and then being responsible for 8923 tonnes of carbon emissions is sooo unserious
— josh (@joshieonfilm) July 29, 2022
going to grab a coffee with my friend taylor swift pic.twitter.com/8Mr1CbdlW2
— cam (@smackcam13) July 30, 2022
But they also found amusement in picturing Swift’s reaction to getting the jet taken away.
taylor swift after someone confiscated her private jet: pic.twitter.com/LoPhjtMOIU
— ces🌙 (@swifolkfolk) July 30, 2022
taylor swift after being forced to travel in a car instead of her private jet : pic.twitter.com/fgSEtbNb9T
— Ron🧩 (@evermoretrack2) July 30, 2022
Others pointed out that while celebrities like Swift having private jets and using them to excess isn’t great for the environment or the planet amid a climate crisis, they’re far from the worst offenders of carbon emissions; many of the worst offenders come from power plants and other refineries.
This is another example of trying to blame structural issues on individuals. Taylor Swift and Kylie Jenner are not single-handedly driving anthropogenic climate change. Riding your bike to work and doing Meatless Mondays is not going to reverse it unless everyone does it.
— Science Cowboy (@aadityad9) July 30, 2022
the 100 corporations that are responsible for 71% of climate change when they see yall blame taylor swift and kylie jenner for the climate crisis pic.twitter.com/oTntkBZu83
— Tayoncé Defense Attorney is an Alien Superstar (@lesbeyonsay) July 31, 2022
Swift’s private jet has taken several more flights since July 19, according to @CelebJets. The most recent flight was on July 30.