SWAFEA final report “lays groundwork for the deployment of sustainable aviation biofuels in Europe”

The Sustainable Way for Alternative Fuels and Energy for Aviation report, submitted
to the EC, gives details of how they propose European aviation can get up to 2%
of biofuels by 2020. They claim “sustainable” biofuel, in huge amounts, can be
  On aviation industry emissions reduction targets, the study finds that stabilisation
of emissions at 2020 levels – using biofuels – would probably take well beyond
2030.and it sees some of the problems.

SWAFEA final report lays groundwork for the deployment of sustainable aviation
biofuels in Europe


26.7.2011 (Green Air online) 

This is a horrendous report, backing biofuels for avaition, and very worrying


 Although the aviation sector has a good track record in reducing its environmental
impact through efficiency gains, it is highly unlikely to reduce or even stabilise
its emissions through this means alone, but biofuels present a real potential
for reduction, concludes a major European study into aviation alternative fuels.
However, a number of major challenges need to be faced including feedstock availability
and development, and how to overcome the economic barriers for investors. The
study recommends that quota mandates should be considered and suggests that auction
revenues from the EU ETS be used to kick-start the process. As a first step, a
low minimum goal for European aviation biofuel introduction in 2020 – a 2% market
penetration is proposed
– should be the basis for triggering a start-up of production.

The findings are included in a final 110-page report submitted to the European
Commission on the conclusion of the two-year Sustainable Way for Alternative Fuels and Energy in Aviation (SWAFEA) project, the most comprehensive study of the deployment issue to date.

In respect of aviation industry emissions reduction targets, the study finds
that stabilisation of emissions at their 2020 levels will take time to be achieved,
probably well beyond 2030, but is feasible with the deployment of biofuels from
hydrotreated renewable jet (HRJ) and biomass-to-liquid (BTL) pathways. The 2050
target of halving emissions by 2050 compared to 2005, however, will require radically
more efficient pathway solutions, such as algae.

The study, carried out by a 20-strong consortium led by French aviation research
institution Onera, recommends the setting up of a European network of excellence
to evaluate new fuel pathways with regard to aviation requirements. Rather than
compete with standards bodies like ASTM International and Defence Standards, it
should complement and interface with them and contribute to the approvals processes.
In addition, the network should also include capability to consider sustainability
and industrial aspects.

The need is also identified for coordination between different initiatives or
R&D programmes engaged in Europe and also coordination at a political level
concerning regulations or policies. The study suggests setting up a European Technology
Platform that synthesises on-going activities and offers a platform for information
exchange. Such a structure could be opened up to international cooperation and
partnerships. Given the synergy existing for many links of the biofuel chain between
the aviation and the automotive industries, it suggests the two sectors should
work more closely together.

Beyond R&D, the study identifies the need for demonstration initiatives at
the various steps of the fuel value chain in order to consolidate the knowledge
and choice for future development, or to accelerate deployment of alternative
aviation fuels. It suggests the demonstration of a regular supply of aviation
biofuel to an airport, for example, would be a helpful initiative to identify
and assess in a real situation all the practical issues brought on by the introduction
of new fuels and pave the way for future large-scale deployment at European airports.

At a European level, there should be a harmonisation of sustainability requirements
between different regulations and policies. Aviation fuel being a global commodity,
an international harmonisation of sustainability regulations and policies would
help and should be searched at International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO)
level for a worldwide application in accordance with ICAO’s resolution on climate
change, suggests the study. There should be an alignment of the various lifecycle
analysis methodologies and sustainability criteria in order to facilitate a worldwide
certification of aviation fuel.

The report suggests research should be supported on a methodological approach
of indirect land use change and associate policy measures, as well as to investigate
further the environmental and societal impacts and acceptance of intensive energy
biomass production.

The major economic issue for aviation biofuels is their lack of competitiveness
with conventional fuel, at least in the first decade of deployment, and the changes
in feedstock prices. Both biomass availability and the economics demonstrate the
need for more efficient processing pathways, with higher yields and reduced costs,
and for new sources of feedstocks.

To start up the production of aviation biofuels, a combination of measures will
be required to achieve the initial target. In particular, an overall field-to-wing
strategic plan could be an efficient approach that would push for the emergence
of a number of ‘end-to-end’ projects addressing the complete production chain,
from feedstock to fuel.
Means of funding could include the possible use of ETS revenues complemented
by a limited quota mandate policy in a ‘push and pull’ approach that guarantees
the deployment takes place and also offers the distribution of funding to a wider
range of players.
It suggests the Commission explores the possibility of including aviation biofuels
in the EU Renewable Energy Directive, which stipulates a minimum share of 10%
renewable energy in transport by 2020.

BTL and HRJ pathways are currently the most mature processes for a deployment
by 2020 but the higher investment required for BTL plants, although they are potentially
more efficient, is another economic barrier to be overcome. Even for an institution
like the European Investment Bank, reports the study, such an investment would
be too risky. A way to reduce the risk and raise the capital would be to establish public-private
partnerships in which investment is shared between private entities and governments,
with eventually additional grants from Europe.

Although biofuels are zero rated under the ETS, this alone is not a sufficient
incentive for deployment, finds the report.
It estimates that EU member states will raise around €29.2 billion over the 2012-2020
period from ETS auctions.

The 2% biofuel share of the aviation fuel market by 2020 represents production
of 1.25 million tonnes of aviation biofuel to be uplifted in Europe. A strategic
plan that involved both subsidising aviation biofuel use for a five-year period
at a cost of around €3.6 billion and half the aviation share of the overall €10
billion investment required to build the necessary two HRJ and four BTL plants
could be met from ETS revenues.

The SWAFEA findings, first presented at a conference in February (see article),
have already prompted the Commission into action. In June, along with Airbus, leading European airlines and biofuel producers,
the Commission’s energy directorate launched the ‘Biofuel Flightpath’ initiative
to speed up the introduction and commercialisation of aviation biofuels in Europe.
It sets out a roadmap for achieving an annual production of two million tonnes
of sustainable biofuel from European-sourced feedstock by 2020 (see article).

In separate news, the Commission last week approved the first voluntary sustainability
schemes, with the aim of ensuring biofuels used in Europe meet strict sustainability
criteria set out in the Renewable Energy Directive (RED). The criteria covers
land use issues and sets minimum levels of GHG savings over the whole production
chain compared to fossil fuels. These schemes now have open access to the EU market
without further verification of sustainability aspects.

Each scheme is required to monitor the whole chain and appoints independent auditors
to carry out the controls. Out of 25 applications, seven EU and international
schemes have been approved in the first assessment round, including the Swiss-based
Roundtable on Sustainable Biofuels (RSB).

A multi-stakeholder initiative, RSB has developed a global sustainability standard
and certification system for biofuel production. It represents over 120 organisations
globally, including farmers, regulators and NGOs. The aviation industry has thrown
its weight behind the RSB as the main institution to verify the sustainability
of aviation biofuels.
The report is at
(111 pages)
The report contains statements such as (page 11)

If this target is technically possible, it is underlined that it requires a significant
effort and investment in agriculture, cultivating a large amount of lands not
cultivated today, the availability of fertilizers and of manpower. Indeed agriculture
appears as the main potential source of biomass. From the yield increase technical
point of view, meeting the demand for biomass seems feasible by 2050. However
there is a significant challenge to achieve the foreseen development of the production
in the next 40 years. Reaching a carbon neutral growth at 2020 emissions level from 20308 would for example request a rate of increase of the biomass production between
2020 and 2030 that appears extremely hard to achieve. This means that achieving
carbon-neutral growth at 2020 levels will depend on economic measures beyond 2030.

(page 4 7)

An additional methodological issue regarding LCA is related to indirect land
use change (iLUC). Land use change may indeed result as an indirect consequence
of the deployment of biofuel and may not be immediately visible. Indirect land
use change results from the displacement of cultures because of the deployment
of energy crops on areas that were used for other purposes and especially for
food production. iLUC is difficult to observe and evaluate as it is an indirect
process with a temporal and geographical shift. It’s also something difficult
to control through certification schemes since it falls outside of the control
of the audited companies (agricultural producers). Currently neither the RSB nor
the RED have introduced iLUC in their standards and there is today no consensus
on a methodology to address iLUC in LCA.
(page  8)

In particular, it should be noted that the major part of the biomass is likely
to come from the conversion of what is currently grazing lands, as the potential
from croplands in 2050 is quite limited.
(page 10)

From the assessment performed within SWAFEA, it was concluded that, with the
current transformation processes (Fischer-Tropsch and oils hydroprocessing), an
excessive fraction of the traditional biomass (from agriculture and forestry)
possibly produced in 2050 would be required in order to achieve the aviation industry
target of halving emissions in 2050 compared to 2005.  Radically more efficient
biomass or processes and also revolutionary aircraft technologies would be necessary
to meet this goal.

Read more »

Thomson Airways’ 50% cooking oil biofuel flight grounded after fuel delivery hitch

Airline’s pioneering biofuel flight grounded after delivery hitch

 by ClickGreen staff.

27 July 2011

Thomson Airways run out of testing time for biofuel flight.
The UK’s first commercial flight powered by sustainable biofuels has been postponed
after delivery problems, airline Thomson Airways confirmed this afternoon.

Thomson Airways’ flight TOM7424 from Birmingham to Palma was scheduled to make
aviation history tomorrow by being the first to fly passengers on sustainable
biofuel. [Not the first passenger flight to claim it was powered  using “sustainable”

But an announcement today from the airline said the green fuel pilot had been
scraped although the flight will continue as scheduled – but fuelled with conventional
jet fuel instead.

Thomson Airways’ communications director, Christian Cull said in a statement:
“A delay beyond our control during the transportation of the sustainable biofuel
from source in the USA, into the UK, has meant that we were unable to conduct
our stringent testing process in time for the first scheduled customer flight.

“Given that we are now heading into the busiest part of the summer season, we
will continue as planned with flights from September, so that we avoid the need
for testing during our peak flying period.

“Once the required testing has been conducted as planned, we will then be in
a position to confirm a new revised scheduled customer flight using this sustainable

The fuel was supplied by Dutch-based company, SkyNRG, who was being advised by
an independent Sustainability Board consisting of two leading NGOs and a leading
European scientific institute.

It was originally hoped the weekly sustainable biofuel flights would operate
for one year from Birmingham to Palma in the summer and Birmingham to Alicante
in the winter.


Comment from an AirportWatch member:
I wonder if, after KLM and Finnair, SkyNRG couldn’t get hold of any more used
cooking oil (and Thomson presumably would have wanted the PR from using that at
least for the first flight)?
see earlier

Chipping in to help the environment: Thomson Airways launches aircraft powered

Date Added: 2nd July 2011


Next month, Thomson Airways will become Britain’s 1st airline to fly customers
on biofuel – in this case cooking oil – when it operates a service to Spain. 
It plans to operate the flight from Birmingham to Palma, on July 28 once final
safety clearance is received. Flights will use a 50/50 blend of Jet A1 fuel and
hydroprocessed esters and fatty acids (HEFA) fuel — made from used cooking oil.
After that weekly flights to Spain using biofuel will begin in September.        
Click here to view full story…


IUCN and WWF International give their backing to “sustainable” biofuels and their
use by the EU

Date Added: 25th July 2011


The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and WWF have welcomed
the recognition of the new Roundtable on Sustainable Biofuels certification system by the European Commission, for meeting the sustainability criteria of the Renewable
Energy Directive. They believe it is crucial for biofuels to be produced in a
way that is consistent with sustainable resource management, contributing to both
positive economic and social development.  
Click here to view full story…


Lufthansa will get its biofuel from Neste Oil, with palm oil likely to be sneaked
into the mix

Date Added: 22nd July 2011


This is a very worrying article about biofuel Lufthansa will be getting from
Neste Oil, which is well known for using large quantities of palm oil. 
It appears that though Lufthansa is saying all the suitable greenwash things
about its flights at present, using only camelina, jatropha and animal fats, as
Neste Oil deals largely with palm oil, it is likely that so called “sustainably
sourced” palm oil will get into the mix, and Lufthansa is not bothered about that.  
Click here to view full story…


Finnair flies commercial flight Amsterdam to Helsinki on 50% cooking oil

Date Added: 21st July 2011


Finnair has joined KLM and Lufthansa to use blended sustainable jet biofuel on
a commercial scheduled flight.
Both engines of an Airbus A319 were fuelled with a mix of 50% biofuel derived
from used cooking oil and 50% conventional jet fuel. The 1,500km journey between
Amsterdam and Helsinki was the longest scheduled flight so far to use biofuel.
Finnair plans to carry out a series of 4 such flights over the coming weeks.
The fuel is from SkyNRG.
  Click here to view full story…

Read more »

IUCN and WWF International give their backing to “sustainable” biofuels and their use by the EU

The Roundtable on Sustainable Biofuels  (RSB) is at http://rsb.epfl.ch/
From IUCN and WWF International:

Joint Statement on the Recognition of the Roundtable for Sustainable Biofuels
Certification System by the European Commission

19 July 2011
The Roundtable for Sustainable Biofuels (RSB), a leading multi-stakeholder initiative
that supports the development of sustainable biofuels, has received official recognition
by the European Commission (EC) for meeting the sustainability criteria of the
Renewable Energy Directive (RED).

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and WWF today welcome the recognition of the new RSB certification system by the European Commission. We believe that it is crucial for biofuels to be
produced in a way that is consistent with sustainable resource management, contributing
to both positive economic and social development.

Our organizations contributed to the RSB process, along with more than 100 other
organizations from over 40 countries, participating in the development of its
principles and criteria, and the associated certification system. We feel that
the stakeholder engagement process followed by the RSB, which followed ISEAL Alliance
code of conduct for standard-setting processes, enhanced the credibility and value
of the RSB standard and certification system.

Protecting diverse ecosystems and carbon stocks, significantly reducing greenhouse
gas emissions compared to the fossil reference, and addressing social issues and
supporting rural development are all key elements of a sustainable biofuels industry.

The EC is the first regulator to have set legally binding sustainability criteria,
and is now recognizing voluntary certification schemes against this standard.
Thereby encouraging economic operators to use ambitious voluntary standards, like
RSB. We would like to call on all relevant economic operators to make commitments
with regards to the production or procurement of RSB certified biofuels to facilitate
the adoption of a high performance standard.

On a finite planet our impact is often greater than we realize. Standards and
certification systems such as Bonsucro (sugarcane sustainability standard) and
the Forest Stewardship Council help create market conditions that support responsible
management and certification through better management practices, reducing environmental
impacts through every step of the supply chain. We feel the RSB will be similarly
effective in creating these conditions for the biofuels industry.

RSB certification will be an important tool in advancing the sustainability of
the global biofuels industry. We will closely follow developments in the adoption
of the standard and recognition by regulators, and look forward to supporting
its implementation and continual improvement in the years to come.


Deviah Aiama, IUCN


Tel. +41 79 942 7670

László Máthé, WWF International


Tel: + 44 78 465 47 355

And today, unfortunately
John Vidal
25.7.2011 (Guardian)

WWF accused of failing to regulate sustainable timber scheme

Investigative group claims that members of group’s Global forest and trade network
are involved in ‘highly destructive activities’

WWF is accused of letting timber companies use its logo while they were razing
rainforests, such as this one in Borneo. Photograph: Frans Lanting/Corbis

Conservation group WWF let timber companies use its panda brand logo while they were razing some of
the world’s most biologically rich rainforests or trading in potentially illegally
sourced timber, according to the investigative group
Global Witness.

The WWF‘s flagship Global forest and trade network (Gftn), which is part-subsidised by the US government and EU, promotes sustainable
timber, bringing together more than 70 international logging companies and large
numbers of timber sellers. The WWF says the 20-year-old scheme is now responsible
for nearly 19% of forest products bought or sold internationally, with members’
combined annual sales approaching $70bn (£43bn).

However, Global Witness’s report, Pandering to the Loggers, claims Gftn’s membership and participation rules are inadequate, allowing companies
to systematically abuse the scheme.

“There are few minimum standards required for companies joining Gftn,” says the
report. “Meaning even companies involved in highly destructive activities, such
as clearing natural
forests to make way for plantations or buying wood products from illegal sources can
join and benefit.” WWF rejects that.

The report, which is billed as a “basic evaluation of the operation and effectiveness
of the scheme”, looks in detail at three case studies.

One is the Malaysian logging company Ta Ann Holdings Berhad, which has clear-felled rainforest in Borneo equivalent to nearly 20 football
pitches a day while a member of the WWF scheme. Investigations by Global Witness
show it working legally within the boundaries of a WWF conservation project that
WWF bills as, “crucial to the survival of Borneo’s endangered species including orangutans
and clouded leopards”.

Another member of the scheme, UK building supplier Jewson, failed to ensure all its timber came from legal sources for nearly 10 years
after joining. WWF said Jewson had changed its timber sourcing practices after
problems had been found.

Global Witness also claims that a third timber company, the Swiss-German Danzer Group, has a subsidiary working in the Democratic Republic of the Congo which has been allegedly involved in conflicts with local communities.

“Gftn rules are less stringent than US and EU laws prohibiting the import of
illegal timber,” said Tom Picken, a forest campaigner at Global Witness in a press
release. “When a landmark scheme created in the name of conservation tolerates
one of its member companies destroying orangutan habitat, something is going seriously

WWF said many of the allegations were misleading. “Gftn has made a major contribution
to conservation through its ability to engage with industry. Participants make
clear commitments that demonstrate they reject illegal or suspicious timber. Trade
participants report on an annual basis, and sites are inspected on an annual basis
where appropriate.”

It also said that only Ta Ann’s processing facilities were included in the WWF
scheme. “The first year of work with Ta Ann’s mills has resulted in improvements
in their sourcing profile. As with all participants, longer term compliance with
the agreed action plan will be critical to their continued participation.”

It added that it was investigating allegations of an incident involving a community
associated with the Danzer subsidiary in Congo. “Whilst WWF-drc continues to investigate
the case, no further engagement will be taken [with the subsidiary].”

WWF, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, makes about $500m a
year from donations and corporate endorsements but has been criticised by other
environment groups
and NGOs for its links to forestry, mining, tobacco, banks, palm oil, biofuel and other
companies. Last month a German public broadcaster accused WWF of being too close
to GM food companies working in Latin America. The charge was strongly denied
by WWF, which argues that it seeks a “constructive dialogue” with industries.
GM soybeans have been certified as “sustainable” by the
Round Table on Responsible Soy Association (RTRS), an organisation instigated by the WWF.

Global Witness has called on WWF to rigorously evaluate the scheme with a comprehensive
independent audit. “Donor governments using public-sector funds to finance Gftn
should make further support conditional on such an evaluation being carried out,
along with the implementation of any resulting recommendations being realised,”
said Picken.

Read more »

Lufthansa will get its biofuel from Neste Oil, with palm oil likely to be sneaked into the mix

This is a very worrying article.
It appears that though Lufthansa is saying all the suitable greenwash things
about its flights at present, using only camelina, jatropha and animal fats, as
Neste Oil deals largely with palm oil, it is likely that so called “sustainably
sourced” palm oil will get into the mix, and Lufthansa is not bothered about that. 
Indeed, how else could so much biofuel be found, unless it came from feedstocks
such as palm oil?  The greenwash about using “sustainable” biofuels needs to be
checked very carefully indeed.
Lufthansa takes off towards a new era of sustainably fuelled regular commercial
scheduled flights 


Mon 18 July 2011 (GreenAir Online)
The first in Lufthansa’s long-heralded series of commercial scheduled sustainable
biofuel flights finally took off on Friday morning (July 15). Save for camera-wielding
media, the 50-minute flight from Hamburg to Frankfurt passed uneventfully for
passengers taking the shuttle. Four daily flights between the two cities will
now take place using the same Airbus A321 aircraft over the next six months as
part of the airline’s burnFAIR project to research the long-term effects of jet
biofuels under normal operations.
Around 1,600 tonnes of fuel has been supplied by Neste Oil, which is a 50/50 blend of sustainably-sourced biosynthetic kerosene mixed with
conventional jet fuel at the Finnish renewable fuel company’s Porvoo bio-refinery.
The blend will be used to power one of the aircraft’s two engines. Certainly in
the short term, Neste is likely to remain Europe’s only supplier of commercial
quantities of sustainable jet biofuel and says it is in discussions with other
prospective airline customers.

The 800 tonnes of Neste’s renewable jet biofuel supplied for the project is made
up of 80% camelina from the United States, 15% jatropha sourced from Indonesia
and Mozambique and 5% tallow (animal fats). Lufthansa’s VP Aviation Biofuel, Joachim
Buse, assures the batch has been meticulously researched to ensure the biomass
meets either Roundtable on Sustainable Biofuels (RSB) or International Sustainability
and Carbon Certification (ISCC) standards.

Buse recognises that Neste Oil’s core NExBTL fuel product is largely based on controversial palm oil
but says Neste has fully complied with criteria set down by the Roundtable on
Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO). Although the batch of fuel to be used in the Lufthansa
trial does not officially contain palm oil he does not have qualms about its use,
subject to stringent sustainability conditions.

He said the RSPO has been very careful over the land use issue and was proven
to be a good indicator of a sustainable feedstock production. “There may be traces of palm oil in our batch due to the production process but
we don’t have a problem with that. We know the entire batch has been produced
on a sustainable basis,
” he told GreenAir Online in Hamburg before the inaugural flight.

“There is no doubt mistakes have been made with palm oil with regards to deforestation
but not when used as an energy crop. We have seen the demand for palm oil increasing
over the years for animal feedstocks and the human food chain and those errors
have served as a wake-up call. We fully understand the position of the NGOs and
there is a challenge to ensure there is no harm done to nature and the production
of food.”

Buse said the 1,600 tonnes of 50/50 blended will be enough for the full six-month
programme. He says the airline has paid a little more than double the going price
for the biofuel element compared to jet kerosene, which is currently around $990
per tonne. However, the premium has to some extent been offset by a German government
grant of €2.5 million ($3.5m) towards the €6.6 million ($9.3m) burnFAIR project.

Whether the biofuel premium is a price worth paying for continued regular flights
after the end of the project is a question Buse said will be debated internally
during the autumn. “However, our CEO has indicated he would like the flights to
continue. Whether we do it in the same magnitude, for example we could use a lower
blend, has not yet been decided but we will have to bear the cost ourselves.”

He foresees more jet biofuel production capacity coming onstream over the next
year or so from the United States but, for the time being, Neste will remain the
market leader for these fuels in Europe.

Lufthansa is estimating that the use of the 800 tonnes of biofuel over the six-month
series of flights will yield CO2 reductions of around 1,500 tonnes, which works
out as a 60% lifecycle reduction in CO2 emissions. Senior Aviation Biofuel Manager
Dr Alexander Zschocke said this was a conservative estimate at this stage. A more
accurate calculation will be carried out by the German Biomass Research Centre
(DBFZ) in Leipzig and the Technical University of Hamburg-Harburg. “They will
also follow up the entire lifecycle chain from the farm to the wing,” added Buse.

For Neste Oil, the renewable jet fuel market is clearly a major business opportunity
and the Finnish company sees itself as the only European supplier at this time
capable of meeting a demand for industrial quantities of sustainably sourced jet
biofuel. Indeed, Matti Lehmus, Executive VP Oil Products and Renewables for Neste,
believes his company and Dynamic Fuels of the United States, which supplied fuel
via SkyNRG for the recent KLM biofuel flight, are the only players in the global
field right now.

“One of the important milestones of the Lufthansa series of flights is that it
shows there are industrial-scale quantities of sustainable jet fuel available,”
he said.

Lehmus says his company has four refineries with annual production capacity for
around 2 million tonnes of renewable NExBTL diesel fuel, much of which has the
potential to be converted to jet fuel.

“We have an ongoing dialogue with a number of airlines at present,” he revealed,
but declined to comment on the on-off relationship with his country’s flag carrier,
Finnair. The airline was reported to be in discussions with Neste at the turn
of the year over taking early supplies of NExBTL jet fuel but later pulled out,
rumoured to be over palm oil concerns.
Last week, Finnair announced it would be starting flights between Amsterdam and
Helsinki using renewable jet fuel from Dynamic Fuels supplied by SkyNRG.

Although palm oil makes up around half of the company’s current source of biomass,
Lehmus said it is a matter of customer preference as to what sustainable feedstocks
they wish to use.

“With our feedstock strategy we have been making a lot of effort in making sure
we can trace every batch, whether it is palm oil or from other current feedstocks,
to its origin to make sure it fulfils stringent EU sustainability criteria. In
parallel, we have also been looking at other future feedstocks so we could offer
renewable jet fuels from any sustainable vegetable oil-based product.”

He concedes that the availability of sufficient commercial quantities of biomass
that can be adequately traced for sustainability is still the major challenge.
A research stream closer to home is focusing on wood waste and a project is ongoing
with a large Finnish paper manufacturer involving a demonstration plant. “We know
the technology works but we have not yet made an investment decision,” he said.

The other barrier, of course, is the price of jet fuel from renewable sources
and whether airline customers are willing to pay the premium. “No question, it
is more expensive today than regular jet fuel. It is a function of the relative
price of crude oil compared with that of the biomass – which is a big factor driving
the difference.”

However, he sees factors such as the introduction in 2012 of Europe’s Emissions
Trading Scheme, under which biofuels are zero-rated and therefore potentially
saving money spent by airlines on carbon permits, as helping to drive jet biofuels

Also taking part in the inaugural biofuel flight celebrations was Dr Klaus Nittinger,
Adviser to the Lufthansa board on fleet matters and also President of the new
German aviation biofuel association aireg (Aviation Initiative for Renewable Energy
in Germany) that was launched last month (see article). Dr Nittinger said he looked
forward to learning from Neste’s expertise and knowledge in developing sustainable
jet fuels and welcomed all-comers who supported their introduction.

He told GreenAir Online: “We need an industrial base to make this a sustainable
business. For the time being we can only buy very minor quantities of biofuels
so we have to get an industrial process into action to develop what is a commodity
for the future.

“We want to gather all the players together in our initiative – farmers, producers,
airlines, manufacturers and so on – into a process chain.”

Dr Nittinger said a key role of aireg would be to act as the voice of the industry
when dealing with the German government on the issue, and a secretary of state
would serve on an advisory council. He revealed that there would be biannual meetings
of aireg members and five working groups were being established

He said there was no longer any aviation resistance in Europe to jet biofuels, which had shown themselves to have more energy content than conventional kerosene,
with a 2-3% improvement in fuel efficiency and lower CO2 emissions, and were also
cleaner burning in terms of other emissions such as soot particles.

Also attending the event was Airbus chief Tom Enders. “These daily biofuel flights
are a significant step forward in our industry-wide pursuit of a sustainable future
for aviation,” he said.


Lufthansa Pure Sky

Neste Oil

Airbus – Alternative Fuels



Read more »

Finnair flies commercial flight Amsterdam to Helsinki on 50% cooking oil

Finnair’s scheduled commercial biofuel flight marks a step towards more sustainable
flying, says airline 


20.7.2011 (Green Air online)

Finnair’s scheduled commercial biofuel flight marks a step towards more sustainable flying, says airline | Finnair,SkyNRG,EPIC Aviation
Finnair A319 readied for biofuel flight at Amsterdam Schiphol (photo: Finnair)
Finnair this evening joined KLM and Lufthansa as one of the first airlines to
use blended sustainable jet biofuel on a commercial scheduled flight.
Both engines of an Airbus A319 were fuelled with a mix of 50% biofuel derived
from used cooking oil and 50% conventional jet fuel. The 1,500km journey between
Amsterdam and Helsinki was the longest scheduled flight so far to use biofuel.
Finnair plans to carry out a series of four such flights over the coming weeks.
The fuel is part of a batch sourced and held at Schiphol by Dutch company SkyNRG,
which was also used by KLM in the first ever such flight on June 29 and is also
being supplied to Thomson Airways in the UK for its planned flight on July 28.

Finnair said it was important to find an ecologically, financially and socially
sustainable fuel solution and the flight marked a step towards more sustainable

“Biofuel use is still not financially sustainable because biofuel is more expensive
than ordinary aviation fuel and no large-scale production or distribution has
yet been established,” said Finnair’s Vice President Sustainable Development,
Kati Ihamäki.

“Finnair, moreover, does not receive any kind of financial support to use biofuel,
unlike some other airlines,” she adds, referring to the funding Lufthansa received
from the German government towards its burnFAIR project, which saw the start of
its six-month programme of regular biofuel flights last week (July15).

The used cooking oil that formed the basis of the Finnair jet biofuel came from
Dynamic Fuels in Louisiana, USA, and was blended by Salem, OR, based aviation
fuel supplier EPIC Aviation.

“By being smart, nimble and innovative, Finnair can play a very important game
in building this industry,” Dirk Kronemeijer, Managing Director of SkyNRG told
GreenAir. “We have also signed an MOU with Finnair that will help them to get
sustainable but affordable fuel in the future by participating in our supply chain

Added Ihamäki: “We want to be a pioneer in the sustainable development of air
transport.  SkyNRG’s leading approach in setting up innovative supply chains for
truly sustainable jet fuel made them a logical partner for us.”

Commenting on behalf of Airbus, the aircraft manufacturer’s Head of Environmental
Affairs, Andrea Debbane, said: “Our sector’s goal is to find sustainable biofuel
solutions so we do not compete with food, land nor water and these Finnair flights
are a step in that direction. Airbus is at the forefront in helping to speed up
the commercialisation of biofuels for aviation and these latest passenger flights
are proof that we have already come a long way.



Finnair – Environment


EPIC Aviation


Read more »

Mallee trees to provide biomass for Virgin Australia sustainable aviation biofuel venture

Mallee trees to provide biomass for Virgin Australia sustainable aviation biofuel
venture in Western Australia


 13.7.2011 (Green Air Online)

Mallee trees to provide biomass for Virgin Australia sustainable aviation biofuel venture in Western Australia | Virgin Australia,mallee,CSIRO

Planting mallees can be a good option for Australian wheatbelt farmers

(photo: Oil Mallee Australia)  

(Mallees are a lower growing, branching form of eucalyptus.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eucalyptus )

Virgin Australia is to partner with renewable fuel technology and agriculture
interests to develop a sustainable aviation biofuel project in Western Australia.
The consortium plans to use pyrolysis technology developed by Canadian company
Dynamotive Energy Systems to process mallees, a species of eucalypt tree that
can be grown sustainably in many parts of Australia.
The consortium is currently finalising plans for a demonstration unit that will
make biofuels for testing, certification and public trials. The unit is intended
to be operational in 2012, followed by construction of a commercial-scale plant
that could be operational as early as 2014, says the airline. Jet biofuels derived
from pyrolysis have not yet been approved for commercial aviation use but is a
pathway undergoing due process by certification body ASTM International, which
last week approved blended hydrotreated oil-based alternative fuels.

Dynamotive has invested in excess of $100 million over the past 10 years in developing
its fast pyrolysis technology from bench-scale through to commercial-scale plants
in Canada.

“We have a great opportunity to develop a sustainable industry in Western Australia
capable of producing second generation fuels that do not require food sources
and have positive effects on land and water management,” says Dynamotive CEO Andrew

According to Kevin Goss, CEO of the Future Farm Industries Co-operative Research
Centre, which is leading the mallees commercialisation, the tree can be planted
in balance with crop and livestock production in Australia’s wheatbelt region.

“As well as becoming a source of biomass for renewable energy, they offer protection
from wind erosion, help to avoid dryland salinity and provide improved livestock
shelter. They even provide habitat for native birds and mammals,” he claims.

“However, for mallee biomass to provide a diversified income stream to farmers
it requires new processors entering the market and a sharp reduction in supply
chain costs through technological change. This alliance opens up a new industry
development path.

“Just imagine if this takes off – Australian mallees fuelling jet engines; a
double win for environmental sustainability with airlines running on fuel the
production of which actually benefits the environment and farmers. It doesn’t
get much better than that.”

The company says more than 1,000 farmers have planted mallees in belts on their
farms, mainly in Western Australia, and will be bringing a prototype hardwood
biomass harvester, the world’s first it says, to the state for wide-scale demonstrations
later this year.

A fourth member of the consortium is Renewable Oil Corporation, which is Dynamotive’s
Australian partner and develops pyrolysis biofuel projects in the country. The
privately-funded company has investors in Australia, Canada and Europe.

Commenting on the project, Virgin Australia CEO John Borghetti said: “Over the
past few years we have been working with stakeholders across the industry to research
and develop bio-derived renewable fuels that can be used to progressively replace
conventional aviation fuels.

“We believe this new project has great potential given the results with the technology
and the availability of this unique Australian feedstock. It is also particularly
attractive to Virgin Australia because it aligns with our commitment to supporting
the Australian economy and environment, and encouraging Australian innovation.”

A recent report by CSIRO (Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation),
Australia’s national science agency, demonstrated in a roadmap scenario how the
Australian aviation sector could achieve a 5% biofuel share in their total fuel
use by 2020, expanding to 40% by 2050. The report concluded there should be sufficient
local biomass to support 46% of aviation biofuel needs by 2020 and over 100% by
  (see article).


Virgin Australia – Sustainability

Dynamotive Energy Systems Corporation

Renewable Oil Corporation

Future Farm Industries



Read more »

Theresa Vlliers gives her support to aviation biofuels, including Thomson cooking oil flights

Thomson Airways to become first UK sustainable jet biofuels operator as it announces
start of weekly flights


1.7.2011   (GreenAir Online) 



UK holiday airline Thomson Airways is to operate the UK’s first sustainable biofuel
commercial flight at the end of this month and start regular weekly flights from
September on routes from Birmingham.

A 50/50 blend of used cooking oil [which includes animal fat – tallow] and regular
jet kerosene is being supplied by Netherlands-based SkyNRG, which has sourced
the biofuel from Dynamic Fuels in the United States.. It will be the same blend
of fuel as that used on a KLM flight from Amsterdam to Paris earlier this week.

Thomson called on the UK and EU governments to help reduce the significant premium
of sustainable aviation biofuels over conventional fuels by incentivising investment.
Welcoming the airline’s announcement and the aviation industry’s drive towards
technological change, UK Aviation Minister Theresa Villiers said the fuels had
a role to play in efforts to tackle climate change.

The first flight to use the biofuel will take place on July 28 on a journey from
Birmingham to Palma, once a stringent testing process has been completed and final
safety clearance has been received. Although hydro-processed, or so-called HEFA,
fuels have been approved by standards body ASTM International for commercial use,
final rubber-stamping is still to be completed over the coming weeks.

At this stage, the plan is to operate weekly biofuel flights for one year from
Birmingham to Palma in the summer and from Birmingham to Alicante in the winter,
using a Rolls-Royce-powered Boeing 757-200. The airline says that as the fuels
become more commercially viable, it plans to use them across its fleet over the
next three years.

Birmingham Airport will be supporting the operation through provision of a dedicated
fuel truck, independent oversight and storage infrastructure.

The airline says it has placed sustainability in aviation at the top of its list
of priorities and the biofuel had undergone rigorous sustainability testing in
line with the requirements set out by the Roundtable on Sustainable Biofuels (RSB).

“Sustainable biofuels offer us the opportunity to improve our own individual
environmental performance as well as contributing to the UK’s carbon reduction
target,” said Chris Browne, Managing Director of Thomson Airways.

“Sustainability is key to this investment,” added the airline’s Environment Manager,
Deirdre Kotze. “SkyNRG’s robust approach on this matter played a big role in giving
them our confidence.”

Set up as a consortium by KLM two years ago, SkyNRG is advised by an independent
Sustainability Board comprising of two environmental NGOs [ these are WWF International
and IUCN  – see below ] and an academic institute, and is an active supporter
of the RSB. The company describes itself as a one-stop shop for airlines, integrating
the complete feedstock-to-flight supply chain process.

“We have tried to make the entry barrier for airlines to embrace this new fuel
era as low as possible,” said Dirk Kronemeijer, SkyNRG’s Managing Director. “Being
selected as supplier for Thomson Airways is therefore a big deal for us as it
proves that we are on the right track to help create this industry.”

However, Thomson says the significant premium attached to sustainable aviation
biofuels was itself unsustainable for the airline industry.

“We urge UK and EU governments to use this opportunity to review the legislation
and remove the barriers around sustainable biofuels so that other airlines can
follow our lead,” said Browne. [In  other words, please give the aviation industry yet another handout and/or
tax break].

Welcoming the Thomson Airways announcement, UK Aviation Minister Theresa Villiers
said: “I wish them well with this project. The government believes that sustainable
biofuels have a role to play in efforts to tackle climate change, particularly
in sectors where no other viable low carbon energy source has been identified
– as is the case with aviation.

“We want aviation to flourish and grow but we have also been clear that the environmental
impacts of flying must be addressed. I welcome the efforts being made by the UK
aviation and aerospace industries to drive forward the technological change we
need to tackle this challenge effectively.”

As part of the TUI Travel airline group, Thomson Airways has committed to reducing
carbon emissions by 6% between 2008 and 2014. Operating with one of the highest
load factors in the UK industry, it claims to be amongst the most efficient. The
airline is the UK launch customer for the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, with the first
aircraft due to be delivered next year. The Dreamliner is expected to be 20% more
fuel efficient than similar sized commercial aircraft.


Thomson Airways

TUI Group – Sustainable Development


Dynamic Fuels

see also

Chipping in to help the environment: Thomson Airways launches aircraft powered

1.7.2011  By Daily Mail Reporter
Next month, Thomson Airways will become Britain’s first airline to fly customers
on biofuel – in this case cooking oil – when it operates a service to Spain.

The airline, owned by Europe’s biggest tour operator TUI Travel , said it planned
to operate the flight from Birmingham to Palma, Mallorca, on July 28 once final
safety clearance was received.

Flights will operate on a 50/50 blend of Jet A1 fuel and hydroprocessed esters
and fatty acids (HEFA) fuel — made from used cooking oil

After that weekly flights to Spain using biofuel will begin in September for
a year, on the same route initially and switching to Birmingham-Alicante during
the winter schedule.

Thomson said the flights would operate on a 50/50 blend of Jet A1 fuel and hydroprocessed esters and fatty acids (HEFA) fuel — made from used cooking oil.

Dutch airline KLM operated the world’s first scheduled biokerosene-powered flight
on Wednesday after one of its Boeing 737-800 jets flew 171 passengers between
Amsterdam and Paris, using the same cooking oil-Jet-A mix that Thomson plans to
use.  [50% biofuel in each engine].

KLM, which merged with Air France in 2004, operated a one-off passenger flight
using biofuels in 2009 – the world’s first – and now plans to launch scheduled
biokerosene-fuelled services between Holland and France in September.

Thomson managing director Chris Browne said: ‘As sustainable biofuels become
more commercially viable, Thomson Airways plans to expand its use of sustainable
biofuels across its fleet over the next three years.’   [This will not be using used cooking oil – there is simply not enough of it,
and what there is already gets put to use on the ground].

European airlines, biofuel producers and the EU Commission last week signed up
to produce 2 million tonnes of biofuel for aviation by 2020.

While airlines are keen to use biofuels as a way of cutting down on pollution,
the use of food crops, such as palm oil, in their production has come under fire
for taking land that could be used to feed people.

Thomson said the fuel for its maiden biofuel-powered flight would be supplied
by Dutch company, SkyNRG, which is advised by an independent sustainability board.

Sustainable biofuels costs significant more than regular jet fuel and is a premium
that the airline industry cannot sustain today.

‘The British government believes that sustainable biofuels have a role to play
in efforts to tackle climate change, particularly in sectors where no other viable
low carbon energy source has been identified — as is the case with aviation,’
aviation minister Theresa Villiers said.

Using biofuels will help Thomson meet owner TUI Travel’s plan to reduce the carbon emissions from its airlines by 6 per cent
from 2008-14.

In practice there is nowhere near enough used cooking oil available to fuel planes,
other than as a publicity gimmick.  Most of the used oil is already used as biodiesel
for land vehicles, and other uses. There is nowhere like enough used oil to fuel
the road vehicles that would like to use it now.
BBC   July 2008
There’s simply not enough cooking oil in the UK to take over from diesel entirely
according to the government’s
Better Regulation Commission. Current waste oil supplies could only feasibly power around one-350th of the
UK’s cars. In fact, the Energy Systems Research Unit estimates that the UK can
only produce enough
biodiesel from waste veggie oil to displace less than 0.6% of conventional diesel.
see also

KLM operates first scheduled flight on 50% biokerosene from used cooking oil
in both engines

Date Added: 30th June 2011


KLM has became the first airline to operate a commercial flight carrying 171
passengers on 50% biokerosene. A Boeing 737-800 flew from Schiphol to Paris. 
KLM says they 
would be operating more than 200 flights to Paris on biokerosene in September.
The fuel was supplied by Dynamic Fuels via SkyNRG, the consortium co-founded by
KLM in 2009. “KLM is open to using different raw materials …. as long as they
meet a range of sustainability criteria”.
Click here to view full story…

KLM to launch commercial flights in September Amsterdam – Paris on biofuel (?
used cooking oil ?)

Date Added: 23rd June 2011


KLM says it will fly more than 200 flights between Amsterdam and Paris on biokerosene
made from used cooking oil.   It does not say what percent of the fuel the used
oil will be. KLM then says it will use other fuels too, as long as they meet their
sustainability criteria and include substantial CO2 reductions.  In practice there
is nowhere near enough used cooking oil available, most of which is already used
as biodiesel for land vehicles, and other uses.

Click here to view full story…
More news stories on aviation and biofuels

Read more »

Lufthansa A321 partially powered (50%) by biofuel to enter service Friday

12.7.2011 (Air Transport World, ATW)

Lufthansa plans start its scheduled biofuel flights Friday, launching a six-month
trial in which an IAE V2500-powered Airbus A321 will operate on the Frankfurt-Hamburg
The A321, which will use a 50-50 mix of biofuel and traditional kerosene in one
of its engines, is slated to operate eight daily legs between FRA and HAM. LH
estimates it will save around 1,500 tons of carbon dioxide emissions over the
six months. [It gives no clue about the source of the fuel, or how the carbon
savings are calculated].
LH initially announced the flights last year (ATW Daily News, Nov. 30, 2010) but had to wait for certification.

The aircraft will be refueled at HAM, where the biofuel is expected to be delivered
from Finland’s Nestle Oil. Several German media outlets reported that operating
the A321 partially powered by biofuel for half a year will cost €6.5 million ($9.26
million), €2.5 million of which will be paid by the German government.

Separately, LH said that it will this fall start using new transport containers
made of a light plastic material to hold both cargo and luggage on the lower deck
of aircraft. “The new containers, up to 15% lighter than their predecessors, are
a true benefit for the environment in that kerosene consumption can be lowered
by approximately 2,180 tons per year and Lufthansa will save 6,867 tons of” CO2
emissions, LH stated. Some 5,000 containers are slated to be replaced.

Lufthansa Cargo and Jettainer, an LH Cargo subsidiary, have carried out onboard
testing of the new containers, the airline noted.

Biofuels used in the EU are excluded from fuel calculations  under the EU ETS, so are not counted towards
carbon totals, as will be the case when aviation joins the ETS on 1.1.2012.  So
the use of bio fuels, no matter how expensive in carbon terms to produce (the
carbon used is accounted for in other sectors, such as agriculture, transport
or processing industry) or how environmentally damaging, will save the airlines
a great deal of money from next  year.
see also Guardian  8.7.2011
see earlier
Aviation biofuels on verge of official certification and may fly at Paris air

Certifying body ASTM International looks set to approve the use of hydrotreated
renewable jet (HRJ) fuel for use in commercial aviation, opening up the possibility
for biofuel-powered flights to operate during the 2011
Paris air show which starts on 20th June. It is not known which airline might be using biofuel
at the show. It is not yet known when Lufthansa will start its flights using 50%
biofuel, between Frankfurt and Hamburg.

9.6.2011 (Flightglobal) 

Certifying body ASTM International looks set to approve the use of hydrotreated
renewable jet (HRJ) fuel for use in commercial aviation, opening up the possibility
for biofuel-powered flights to operate during the 2011 Paris air show.

A deciding ballot passed through ASTM’s relevant technical committees on 8 June.

While approval has not been made official yet, Richard Altman, executive director
of the Commercial Aviation Alternative Fuels Initiative (CAAFI), told ATI and
Flightglobal that “from a practical point of view, we are done”.

Once approval is officially given, it clears the way for airlines such as Lufthansa to begin operating flights using a biofuel blend.

Lufthansa had originally planned to begin a six-month trial in April 2011, operating
its Frankfurt-Hamburg route using an International Aero Engines-powered
Airbus A321 with one of its engines running on a 50/50 blend of biofuel derived from
vegetable oil.

However, it was forced to put the plan on hold because the fuel was not certified
in time by regulators.

If ASTM approval becomes official, it will also give the green light for airlines
to operate biofuel-powered flights during the 2011 Paris air show – something
that has been planned in the hope that certification happens before the show begins
on 20 June.

“We’re hoping to get all procedural matters sorted before the air show. If this
happens it opens the prospect for aircraft to fly in on that fuel,” said Altman.
“We’re planning to have a physical presence of aircraft flying this fuel.”

It is not known which airline will conduct the biofuel-powered flight at Paris,
however Lufthansa said it will not be the carrier.

Read more »

BioJet to release 1 billion gallons of jet fuel in the USA

8.7.2011 (Air Transport World – ATW)

By Christine Boynton

(This article gives no clue as to the soure of the fuel)

On the heels of the recent ASTM International Committee on Petroleum Products
and Lubricants’ approval of bio-derived jet fuel for commercial use, Santa Barbara-based
BioJet International announced it will release one billion gallons of renewable
jet fuel priced at $2.97 a gallon to airlines to “aid in the development” of biofuel
in the commercial aviation market.  [The current price of jet fuel, according to IATA, is about $299 per gallon http://www.iata.org/whatwedo/economics/fuel_monitor/Pages/index.aspx  ]

“This offer is made possible because BioJet, through its subsidiaries, owns and
controls multiple, very large biofuels feedstock projects around the world,” the
company said. “This unique position provides BioJet with the ability to control
its internal allocation of resources for a significant cost control advantage
while other companies are subject to severe fluctuations in cost and availability
of feedstock.”

Under new provisions included in ATSM standard D7566, up to 50% bio-derived synthetic
blending components can be added to conventional commercial and military jet or
gas turbine fuel. D7566 also includes new, specific requirements for the bio-derived
synthetic fuel component such as thermal stability, distillation control and trace
material amounts. The specification was provisionally approved in June (ATW Daily
News, June 13) and received full approval July 1.

US Air Transport Assn. VP and Chief Economist John Heimlich said US “airlines
commend ASTM for this critical and significant step, which brings the airline
industry one step closer to meeting our environmental goals of widespread production
of cleaner, alternative fuels while enhancing energy supply security and competitiveness.”

BioJet in February received a $1.2 billion funding facility from Equity Partners
Fund (ATW Daily News, Feb. 15), a sum it calls “the cornerstone” of a $6 billion,
10-year supply chain capital projects program, which will include feedstock, refining
projects, investment and strategic acquisitions.

US Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack last month told ATW that if a market develops
for biofuel to power aircraft, the infrastructure to produce and distribute it
will quickly build up (ATW’s Eco-Aviation Today, June 27).




Annual U.S. domestic consumption of jet fuel in 2008 was around 13 billion gallons.
If this company has 1 billion gallons of biofuel to sell at about $3 a gallon,
that’s going to get some attention. According to Airnav.com, 2011 average prices
for jet-a is $5.42 a gallon. Now, if only the airlines will pass on some of the

Didn’t say they were making money at $3 Maybe they’re giving it away to build
market   Might cost $10 plus
Biojet’s website says:
The primary issue in any biofuel is the feedstock source. The Company is fundamentally
agnostic with regard to feedstocks and is committed to utilizing any and all sustainable
and economically viable sources in the fulfillment of its mission, making it relatively
unique among renewable jet fuel producers. These include jatropha, camelina, algae,
waste biomass and designer sources. The Company holds world class expertise and
experience in jatropha. The Company also has camelina cultivation/refining under
development in Argentina and is in the planning stages for large camelina projects
in Eastern Europe in the U.S. through its joint ventures. The Company also recently
entered into a joint venture agreement with a leading Algae developer and maintains
relationships with Waste Biomass and Designer feedstock developers such that it
will be diversified across all the major potential sources of feedstock and refining

Read more »

Pressure mounts over biofuels – they should not be classed as zero-carbon under the EU ETS

1.7.2011 (Aviation Environment Federation)

A report has been published by ClientEarth, reflecting mounting concerns over
the use of biofuels as a substitute for fossil fuel. Not only are there serious
concerns about land use, competition with food and deforestation, but analysis
shows that biofuels are often nowhere near carbon-neutral. When a full lifecycle
analysis is carried out, the total emissions can be comparable or even higher
than those from burning fossil fuel.

The European Emissions Trading System (ETS) requires industries covered by the
scheme to report and surrender permits for emissions from burning fossil fuels.
But biofuels are currently exempted so the system of capping, the main mechanism
to control emissions, has a potentially large loophole.

The report by ClientEarth is called ‘Bringing the ETS in line with reality: Making
biomass emissions count through the Monitoring and Reporting Regulation.’ It says
that “ .. the current application of a zero-emission factor to emissions from
biomass used in sectors covered by the ETS does not accurately reflect actual
emissions from biomass and is, moreover, contrary to the principle underlying
the ETS that each operator should be responsible for his own emissions.”

The briefing concludes that the Commission should delete the zero-emission factor
for biomass and that it can do so under current legislation for operators using
biomass as part of a broader fuel mix are concerned. Where pure biofuel is used
however, a legislative procedure may be required to amend the relevant ETS Directive.
The report can be found at 

Use of biofuels is highly relevant to aviation, with aviation due to join the
ETS in 2012 and the industry seeking rapid expansion despite all the concerns
about climate change. The biofuel issue is complex, but AEF is supportive of the
principle that biofuels should be recognised under ETS as having non-zero carbon
emissions and should be treated accordingly in caps and permits.

The aviation industry expects uptake of biofuels to be slow and has indicated
that it is only really interested in ‘third generation’ biofuels which will not
compete with food production. But now is the time to get ETS right, especially
as decisions on how biofuel is made will be taken by manufacturers around the
world and not by airlines or the EU.


Read more »