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Airlines turning to biofuels

The aviation industry is increasing its adoption of biofuels in a bid to reduce carbon emissions.

Australian carrier Qantas announced today, that by the end of the decade, its aircraft in Los Angeles will be powered by biofuels. This will help cut emissions on the airlines services between America and Australia.

In an agreement with US bio-energy firm, SG Preston, Qantas will buy eight million gallons of renewable jet fuel over the next 10 years. The fuel is 50% derived from non-food plant oils with the other 50% traditional jet fuel, which equates to half the amount of carbon emissions per gallon.

CEO of Qantas International and Freight, Gareth Evans said: “The partnership with SG Preston is part of our commitment to lowering carbon emissions across our operations and sees us becoming the first Australian airline to use renewable jet fuel on an ongoing basis.

“As an airline group we are constantly looking for ways to become more fuel efficient and embrace new technologies and this partnership is a significant step on that journey.

“Our agreement with SG Preston allows us to secure a supply for our Los Angeles based aircraft where we have a large fuel demand and where the biofuel industry is more advanced.

“Through our biofuel program we are also exploring renewable jet fuel opportunities in Australia and continue to work with suppliers to develop locally produced biofuels for aviation use.”

Air Canada announced it was taking part in a project to test biofuels made from used cooking oils on selected flights between Montreal and Toronto. And this month Australia’s Brisbane Airport confirmed it will start supplying carriers with biofuels they can blend with traditional jet fuel on flights from 2018. Cathay Pacific and KLM are also supporting the increased use of biofuels, which NASA has verified as having environmental benefits.


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