Airline carrier British Airways is planning to introduce sustainable aviation fuel to power a number of their flights, starting early next year in 2022.
The fuel will be made of sustainable waste sources such as waste vegetable oils, fats and greases and can be blended with traditional jet fuel or co-processed alongside traditional refinery feedstocks. This gives it the ability to be used in current aircraft engines and maintain suitability for airport fuel infrastructures, therefore helping to reduce lifecycle carbon emissions by more than 80%, when compared with traditional fossil fuels. Using this new fuel will help drive the airline towards its 2050 goal of net-zero carbon emissions, being the first airline in the world to do so.
To help meet demand, energy manufacturing and logistics company Phillips 66 will be producing thousands of tonnes of the new sustainable aviation fuel which will be used to power several planes in the British Airways fleet. The use of this new fuel will mean that British Airways will reduce their carbon emissions by almost 100,000 tonnes, the equivalent of powering 700 net zero flights between London and New York on its Boeing 787 aircraft.
Sean Doyle, British Airways’ Chairman and Chief Executive, said:
“We are excited to develop our relationship with Phillips 66 Limited further with a view to growing production capacity and using a wider range of sustainable waste feedstocks to supply our future flights. The development of sustainable aviation fuel is a major focus for us and forms part of our commitment to achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2050 through a series of short-, medium- and long-term initiatives.”
As well as reducing carbon emissions by up to 80%, there is also several other benefits that come with SAF (sustainable aviation fuel). One benefit is reduced pollution and improved air quality. According to euractiv.com a recent synthesis of emissions measurements campaigns by the U.S National Academies of Sciences found that blending SAF fuel with conventional jet fuel led to a reduction in particulate emissions by up to 65%. There was also a reduction in oxides of sulfur by nearly 40%. Their reduction is particularly beneficial as it will help to lower the potential risk of any health problems due to air pollution.