IAG to purchase 785,000 tonnes of eSAF – Business Traveller

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IAG to purchase 785,000 tonnes of eSAF – Business Traveller

BA’s parent company International Airlines Group has signed an agreement to purchase 785,000 tonnes of Sustainable Aviation Fuel produced through power-to-liquid technology.

Known as eSAF, the fuel is made from CO2, water and renewable energy, as opposed to standard SAF which is made from a range of feedstock including cooking oil, municipal waste and agricultural residues.

The 14-year contract with California-based producer Twelve – which has “developed and patented a proprietary process that can produce high-quality synthetic fuels from renewable electricity and CO2” – will see IAG supplied with the eSAF “starting as early as 2025”.

Twelve has been partnering with IAG since 2020, when it joined the group’s Hangar 51 start-up accelerator programme.

IAG is the first European airline group to announce an eSAF deal, and it means the group has now reached one third of its target to operate 10 per cent of flights with SAF by 2030.

IAG says that it purchased approximately 12 per cent of the global supply of SAF in 2023.

Last summer IAG and Microsoft announced what they said was “the largest co-funded purchase agreement for Sustainable Aviation Fuel emissions reductions globally, where both parties are funding part of the cost of the supply”.

And in November British Airways announced it had secured £9 million in funding for its sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) partnership dubbed Project Speedbird.

The carrier is working with Teesside-based cleantech company Nova Pangaea Technologies, and leading ethanol to SAF technology firm LanzaJet, with the project set to produce 102 million litres of SAF per year by 2028.

BA’s Project Speedbird SAF partnership secures £9 million government funding

Commenting on the news Luis Gallego, IAG’s CEO, said:

“We have a roadmap to achieve net zero by 2050 including a target to fly with 10 per cent Sustainable Aviation Fuel by 2030. The shortage of sustainable fuel globally continues to be a problem for our industry although innovative companies like Twelve are an important part of the solution.

“This new deal will contribute towards our 2030 SAF target. We would like to see similar projects scale in Europe, and we look forward to working with governments across our key markets to build a SAF industry to deliver jobs, economic growth and a stable supply of SAF.”

In October Lufthansa signed a Letter of Intent with organisations including Airbus and Munich airport for “a broad-based research collaboration on Power-to-Liquid (PtL) aviation fuels”.

The agreement – which also involves MTU Aero Engines and the German Aerospace Center (DLR) – is intended to accelerate the technology selection, market introduction and industrial scaling of PtL aviation fuels in Germany.

Lufthansa partners with Airbus and Munich airport for Power-To-Liquid fuel research

iairgroup.com, twelve.co

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