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Sustainable Aviation Fuel

Emirates select Shell Aviation for SAF supply to Dubai hub

Emirates select Shell Aviation for SAF supply to Dubai hub
Engineers conduct an engine inspection (photo courtesy Emirates).

Air carrier Emirates Group has announced that has signed an agreement with Shell Aviation for the supply of blended sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) for use at the airline’s international hub in Dubai (DXB), United Arab Emirates (UAE). The first SAF delivery under the agreement is expected to commence before the end of the year, making it the first time that SAF is supplied through the DXB airport fuelling system.

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According to a statement, the agreement for the supply of over 300,000 (US) gallons (≈ 1.13 million litres) of blended sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) to DXB is the latest step forward taken by Emirates Airline as part of its environmental strategy that focuses on three areas: emissions reduction, responsible consumption, and the conservation of wildlife and habitats.

As part of the agreement, Emirates will track SAF delivery and its use data through Avelia, one of the world’s first blockchain-powered SAF solutions.

Avelia is powered by Shell Aviation and Accenture, with support from Energy Web together with American Express Global business travel.

Decarbonize corporate travel

Through Avelia, Emirates will purchase the physical SAF and associated environmental attributes to decarbonize its Scope 1-related emissions, while Scope 3 environmental attributes associated with the same physical SAF will be purchased by Shell Corporate Travel to decarbonize its related business travel.

By using Avelia, the agreement demonstrates how book and claim solutions can enable airlines and corporations to share the environmental benefits of SAF.

We are proud to work in partnership with Shell to make a SAF supply available for Emirates in Dubai for the first time, and to utilize the Avelia platform that provides business travelers the flexibility to align their sustainability targets and reduce their environmental footprint when traveling. We hope that this collaboration develops further to provide an ongoing future supply of SAF in our hub, as there are currently no production facilities for SAF in the UAE, said Sir Tim Clark, President of Emirates Airline.

Drop-in fuel

As a safe and fully certified drop-in fuel compatible with existing aircraft fleets and airport infrastructure, SAF can be blended with conventional jet fuel at a ratio of up to 50 percent, creating an aviation fuel that is significantly lower in lifecycle carbon emissions.

In its neat form, SAF can reduce lifecycle emissions by up to 80 percent compared to conventional jet fuel.

Emirates and Shell have a long-standing commercial relationship, and it is fantastic to build on this to work together on decarbonization. This agreement marks a step forward for the aviation industry in the UAE. Enabling SAF to be supplied at DXB for the first time is an important milestone and a perfect example of how the different parts of the aviation value chain have a role to play in unlocking progress on SAF. We hope that this can act as a springboard for more action on SAF across the aviation industry in the UAE and region, delivering another step forward for our net zero emissions journey, said Chu Yong-Yi, VP of Shell Corporate Travel.

Earlier this year, Emirates successfully completed the first 100 percent SAF-powered demonstration flight in the region.

The airline’s first flight powered by SAF blended with jet fuel took place in 2017, operating from Chicago on a Boeing 777.

The airline has also uplifted SAF for flights from Stockholm, Sweden, and currently operates flights from Paris, and Lyon in France, and Oslo, Norway with blended SAF.

Engaged to scale SAF production

Emirates participates in a range of industry and UAE government working groups, along with ongoing stakeholder engagements to help scale the production and supply of SAF.

Together with the UAE General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA), the airline contributed to the development of the UAE’s Power-to-Liquid (PtL) fuels roadmap, driven by the UAE Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure and the World Economic Forum (WEF), and has been an active participant in the UAE’s National Sustainable Aviation Fuel Roadmap launched in January 2023 by the Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure and GCAA.

Aviation plays a vital role in Dubai and the wider UAE economy, and we look forward to continuing collaborating with like-minded organizations and government entities to look at viable solutions that introduce more SAF, a fuel that is currently extremely limited in supply, into the aviation fuel supply chain and support Emirates’ efforts to reduce emissions across our operations, ended Sir Tim Clark.

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