The world's largest aerospace company Boeing has announced an ambitious target to advance the long-term sustainability of commercial aviation, committing that its commercial airplanes will be capable and certified to fly on 100 percent sustainable aviation fuels (SAF) by 2030. Boeing has previously conducted successful test flights replacing petroleum jet fuel with 100 percent SAF to address the urgent challenge of climate change.
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According to Boeing, the Air Transport Action Group (ATAG), the US Department of Energy (DOE), and several other scientific studies have shown that sustainable aviation fuels (SAF) reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by up to 80 percent over the fuel’s life cycle with the potential to reach 100 percent in the future.
100 percent SAF by 2030
Currently, SAF is blended directly with conventional jet fuel up to a 50/50 blend — the maximum allowed under current fuel specifications. In order to meet aviation’s commitment to reducing carbon emissions by 50 percent from 2005 levels by 2050, airplanes need the capability to fly on 100 percent SAF well before 2050.
Our industry and customers are committed to addressing climate change, and sustainable aviation fuels are the safest and most measurable solution to reduce aviation carbon emissions in the coming decades. We’re committed to working with regulators, engine companies, and other key stakeholders to ensure our airplanes and eventually our industry can fly entirely on sustainable jet fuels, said Stan Deal, President, and CEO at Boeing Commercial Airplanes.
Boeing’s commitment is to determine what changes are required for its current and future commercial airplanes to fly on 100 percent sustainable fuels, and to work with regulatory authorities and across the industry to raise the blending limit for expanded use.
With a long history of innovation in sustainable aviation fuels, certifying our family of airplanes to fly on 100 percent sustainable fuels significantly advances Boeing’s deep commitment to innovate and operate to make the world better. Sustainable aviation fuels are proven, used every day, and have the most immediate and greatest potential to reduce carbon emissions in the near and long term when we work together as an industry, said Chris Raymond, Chief Sustainability Officer, Boeing Commercial Airplanes.
Biofuel tests since in 2008
Boeing has been a pioneer in making sustainable aviation fuels a reality, partnering globally with airlines, industry, governments, and research institutions to expand limited supplies and reduce the fuels’ cost.
Boeing worked with airlines, engine manufacturers, and others to conduct biofuel test flights starting in 2008 and gain approval for sustainable fuels in 2011.
In 2018, the Boeing ecoDemonstrator flight-test program made the world’s first commercial airplane flight using 100 percent sustainable fuels with a 777 Freighter, in collaboration with FedEx Express.
Sustainable aviation fuels can be made from a wide variety of feedstocks, including non-edible plants, agricultural and forestry waste, non-recyclable household waste, industrial plant off-gassing, and other sources.
The sustainability of the fuels is assured through strong, credible sustainability certifications through third-party organizations such as the Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials (RSB).