Are eco-friendly flights impossible? | CNBC Explains
British Airways plans to switch to greener fuels next year
British Airways said it intends to operate transatlantic flights on greener fuels as early as next year.
BA invests in a new plant to be built in Georgia by LanzaJet, a commercial commercial aircraft producer LanzaJet made from ethanol sourced from agricultural and other waste.
This fuel has a 70% reduction in carbon emissions compared to conventional counterparts..
It is worth noting that SAF can be used to replace up to 50% of conventional jet fuel, however, demonstration flights have so far only taken place with no more than 5% environmentally friendly fuel..
BA owner IAG, which has pledged to invest nearly £ 300m in SAF as part of a clean energy strategy by 2050, said it will look into building a refinery with LanzaTech in the UK, and fuel waste processing plant in partnership with Velocys.
The announcement comes after Dutch airline KLM revealed its world’s first use of eco-friendly synthetic kerosene on a commercial flight from Amsterdam to Madrid..
Peter Elbers, Chief Executive Officer of KLM, noted that «Shifting from fossil fuels to sustainable alternatives is one of the biggest challenges in aviation. Our first flight on synthetic kerosene shows that we can move in the right direction today.».
«After successfully launching the Georgia plant, we hope to expand SAF technology and manufacturing facilities in the UK.», – said the chief executive officer of VA Sean Doyle.
«But we need government support to accelerate decarbonization and implement this plan.», – he added.
BA and LanzaTech are part of the Jet Zero Council project launched by Boris Johnson Last year. The goal of this initiative is to build a long-range, zero-carbon jet. However, experts reproach the Minister of Transport Grant Sheps in inaction regarding the fulfillment of the plan.
«The Transport Minister argued that the Jet Zero government council was a huge step forward in making critical environmental changes in the airline segment, so it’s disappointing to say that he’s not particularly interested in the project.», – experts write.
Market participants believe that if ministers are serious about making a successful clean fuel transition and tackling the climate crisis, they should focus on making real progress, not just throwing loud words.