IATA wants producers to show further commitment on sustainable fuels, parts

07/12/2022 07:27 PM

From Nurul Jannah Kamaruddin

GENEVA, Dec 7 (Bernama) -- The International Air Transport Association (IATA) wants to see producers show further evidence of their ability to meet the SAF (sustainable aviation fuel) needs of the aviation industry to support its decarbonisation goals.

‘’We want to see commitment made by fuel producers in the reality of production. We want to see the traditional suppliers making a real commitment to SAF.

'’While the volumes are still low, the path is in the right direction. I think 2023 would be important for the industry to see further evidence in relation to the development of sustainable aviation,’’ director general Willie Walsh said during the last day of the IATA Media Global Day here.

The year 2030 has been seen as a tipping point for reaching 30 billion litres of SAF production and utilisation.

SAF production will reach at least 300 million litres in 2022, a 200 per cent increase on 2021’s production of 100 million litres.

Walsh said airlines used SAF even at very high prices.

“If more was available, it would have been purchased. That makes it clear that it is a supply issue and that market forces alone are insufficient to solve it. Governments, who now share the same 2050 net-zero goal, need to put in place comprehensive production incentives for SAF,” he said.

He said governments need to put in place SAF production incentives similar to what is already in place for biogas and biodiesel.

Until the industry has commercialised options for alternative power sources such as hydrogen, all of aviation’s SAF supply is derived from biofuel refineries. 

He reckoned there are also a lot of “questions that need to be answered surrounding hydrogen”, on its clean supply and aircraft availability, storage as well as safety.

“We‘re not factoring in any significant amounts of hydrogen, you know Airbus has talked about a hydrogen-powered aircraft from 2035,” he said.

There are 15 airlines and 15 airports already starting to set commitments on hydrogen aircraft and infrastructures. About US$4.5 billion investment had been allocated for feasibility studies and technology by original equipment manufacturers for research and development purposes.

SAF could contribute around 65 per cent of the reduction in carbon dioxide (CO₂) emissions needed by aviation to reach net zero in 2050.

Nevertheless, there is also a further 35 per cent of CO₂ emitted by other parts of the supply chain such as airframes and engines.

“We expect them to improve their performance,” he said, adding that the whole supply chain works on achieving sustainable goals.

He also expressed objections to taxation as the solution for cutting aviation emissions.




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