Taylor Swift Burned 138 Tons of Jet Fuel Visiting Travis Kelce Over 3 Months?

Claim:

Pop star Taylor Swift burned 138 tons of jet fuel visiting her boyfriend, Travis Kelce, over three months.

Rating:

Mixture

What’s True

Taylor Swift frequently uses private jets for work and leisure air travel, including to visit her NFL boyfriend Travis Kelce, which has been well-documented.

What’s False

However, the part of the claim specifically stating she used “138 tons of jet fuel” is outdated information from December 2023. Considering Swift’s extensive use of private jets and the frequency of her travel, it’s highly likely that the actual amount of jet fuel burned is greater.

Throughout the first half of 2024, social media buzzed with claims that singer Taylor Swift’s frequent travels to see her boyfriend, NFL player Travis Kelce, substantially increased her carbon footprint due to her extensive use of her two private jets. The posts alleged that Swift burned 138 tons of jet fuel “over the last 3 months” while visiting Kelce.

For instance, in January 2024, multiple accounts on X asserted that Swift burned significant amounts of jet fuel during her trips to see Kelce, a tight end for the Kansas City Chiefs. The account @TM1Politics claimed, “Taylor Swift has burned 138 tons of Jet Fuel visiting her boyfriend over the last 3 months. Stop letting her tell you how to vote.” This post garnered 6.1 million views.

A similar claim appeared on X by the account @patriot_hammer in January, regarding Swift’s apparent jet-fuel usage:

(The Patriot Hammer/X)

While it’s true that Swift’s visits to Kelce, whom she has been dating since September 2023, may have contributed to a significant amount of jet-fuel consumption, the claims on social media were based on information published in December 2023. Also, the figure of 138 tons likely represents just a fraction of Swift’s overall jet fuel usage, given that she used the private jets within that three-month span to travel for reasons other than to see Kelce. Her high-profile relationship with Kelce has drawn attention to her travel habits, sparking debates about the environmental impact of celebrity lifestyles.

Snopes reached out to Swift’s public relations team, who did not immediately return a request for comment. 

Let’s examine the broader context of Swift’s international and domestic air travel habits.

Despite Climate Change Concerns, Swift Prefers To Travel Via Private Jet

In a 2020 interview with Variety, Swift touched on her concerns for the environment, stating, “Young people are the people who feel the worst effects of gun violence, and student loans and trying to figure out how to start their lives and how to pay their bills, and climate change, and are we going to war — all these horrific situations that we find ourselves facing right now.”

Despite her apparent concerns regarding climate change, reports from various sources have highlighted Swift’s reliance on private jets for her professional touring commitments and personal air travel, which undoubtedly has a significant environmental impact and contributes to her carbon footprint.

According to news reports, much of the information regarding Swift’s use of her private jets stems from the Instagram account @taylorswiftjets, run by college student Jack Sweeney to track carbon emissions using public data from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). The Instagram account disappeared around December 2023, following a cease-and-desist letter from Swift’s legal team. However, versions of the account are active again on other social media platforms, including Reddit and X

Per a Harper’s Bazaar story published in February 2024, according to @taylorswiftjets, Swift’s use of her jet to see Kelce “produced 138 tons of CO2 emissions in three months,” and for the singer to offset these actions, she would have to “plant more than 2,200 trees.”

In April 2024, Sweeney, with the help of his aircraft tracking analysis platform Ground Control, published a video on YouTube reportedly representing a “timelapse of Taylor Swift’s two jets in 2023, traveling over 178,000 miles”:

Swift Named Top Celebrity Polluter in 2022

In 2022, one year prior to Swift first being linked to Kelce in July 2023, British analytics and marketing agency Yard published its findings on celebrities with the worst private jet CO2 emissions, noting that “this list is not conclusive to the biggest offenders, but the biggest offenders according to the data as presented on the CelebrityJets Twitter page.”

Yard’s data noted that Swift rated No. 1 among the biggest polluters, a list that included Jay-Z and Kim Kardashian, when it came to jet fuel emissions. While the findings do not explicitly note the claimed amount of 138 tons of jet fuel burned by Swift, they cited a much larger volume of nearly 8,294 tons of flight emissions for the year:

Yard’s research found that Miss Swift is the biggest celebrity CO2e polluter of this year so far. 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. 

Taylor’s jet has an average flight time of just 80 minutes and an average of 139.36 miles per flight. Her total flight emissions for the year come in at 8,293.54 tonnes, or 1,184.8 times more than the average person’s total annual emissions. Taylor’s shortest recorded flight of 2022 was just 36 minutes, flying from Missouri to Nashville.

After Yard publishing its list of the biggest polluters, a representative for Swift told Newsweek that the findings were inaccurate, because “Taylor’s jet is loaned out regularly to other individuals,” adding, “To attribute most or all of these trips to her is blatantly incorrect.”

Further defending Swift’s private jet usage, her rep explained to the Daily Mail in December 2023 that “before the tour kicked off in March of 2023, Taylor purchased more than double the carbon credits needed to offset all tour travel.” 

Carbon credits came about as part of the Kyoto Protocol, an international treaty aimed at reducing global greenhouse gas emissions, which was negotiated in 1997, establishing the framework for emissions trading and the use of carbon credits as a mechanism for countries to meet their emission-reduction targets. Critics argue that carbon credits are flawed because they allow polluters to continue emitting harmful greenhouse gases by purchasing credits rather than reducing their emissions at the source.

In February 2024, multiple outlets reported that Swift sold one of her two jets, a Dassault Falcon 900LX said to be worth $40 million. She still owns her other private jet, the Dassault Falcon 7X, according to the FAA, which is registered to a company called Island Jet Inc. that reportedly shares the same Nashville address as Taylor Swift Productions. 

Also in February 2024, CelebrityPrivateJetTracker.com published Swift’s flight information for her Dassault Falcon 900 (prior to the star selling it off) for the six-month period April–October 2023, which would overlap with the period in which she started flying to see Kelce. According to the data, during that six-month period, Swift took 12 flights, with her emissions adding up to 157 metric tons of COpollution. The data did not include emissions for her second private jet.

In short, the exact figure of 138 tons of jet fuel burned may represent just a fraction of Swift’s overall actual carbon footprint (and also is outdated), meaning the broader assertion is true that Swift’s visits to Kelce during a three-month period contributed significantly to her jet fuel emissions. That likely resulted in a negative environmental impact, as supported by evidence of her frequent use of two private jets.

Snopes has previously reported on Swift, including false claims that she would leave the U.S. if Donald Trump won the 2024 presidential election, and that she had expressed opposition to same-sex marriage.

Sources

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