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Sustainable Aviation Fuel

Jet Zero Australia raises AU$29 million in funding

Jet Zero Australia raises AU$29 million in funding
On March 12, 2024, Jet Zero Australia announced the raising of AU$29 million in funding commitments. Stephen Forshaw (left), Airbus Chief Representative, Australia, New Zealand, and the Pacific; Ed Mason, CEO, Jet Zero Australia; Queensland State Development Minister, Grace Grace; Masahiko Sawa, Managing Executive Officer, Assistant to CEO of Manufacturing & Technology, Basic Chemicals, and Carbon Neutral Transformation, Head of CNX Strategy Headquarters, Idemitsu Kosan Co.; and Andrew Parker, Chief Sustainability Officer, Qantas Group (photo courtesy Jet Zero Australia).

Jet Zero Australia Pty Ltd (Jet Zero Australia) has recently announced that it achieved a significant milestone by successfully receiving funding commitments of AU$29 million. This is a crucial step towards advancing the engineering activities of Jet Zero Australia’s flagship Alcohol-to-Jet (ATJ) Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) project, Project Ulysses, in North Queensland, Australia.

Subject to customary closing conditions, the funding will also support the advancement of other renewable fuel opportunities in the region, many of which will leverage and support Queensland’s globally competitive agricultural sector.

The placement, managed by Barrenjoey, has been strongly supported by Jet Zero Australia’s foundational investors, including Qantas and Airbus who are committed to accelerating the establishment of a SAF industry in Australia.

We are delighted to see Jet Zero Australia’s continued expansion and the confidence of others in its planning process as it moves toward key decisions on its first SAF production facility in Australia. The continuing support from the Queensland Government is important, as the right policy frameworks are critical for developing a successful SAF industry here. Australia needs onshore SAF production. This is a crucial first step, but Australia will need more SAF in coming years, and more investment to make it happen. The objective of our initial investment was to test the feasibility of Jet Zero’s Alcohol-to-Jet approach. With that proven, it is exciting to see the company moving forward and we look forward to supporting it through these crucial milestones, said Stephen Forshaw, Airbus Chief Representative, Australia, New Zealand, and the Pacific.

Project Ulysses

Project Ulysses, which has now completed a feasibility study initiated in 2022 with the backing of an AU$760,000 grant from the Queensland Government, and has recently applied for additional grant support from the federal government, if successful, will further assist the Project’s continued development into Front End Engineering and Design (FEED).

The Miles Government is proud to have been an early supporter of Project Ulysses, providing AU$760,000 in seed funding back in 2022. Today’s milestone is another big step towards 1,000 construction jobs and 100 refinery jobs, bringing opportunities for agriculture, aviation, defense, and tourism. Queensland’s renewable energy advantage means we can protect and grow regional jobs in high-tech sectors like this one. We are leading the nation in this area, and the Miles Government is focused on securing our state’s future as a trailblazer in the sustainable aviation fuel industry. We look forward to our continuing work with Jet Zero to progress this game-changing opportunity for Queensland, commented Queensland State Development Minister, Grace Grace.

Jet Zero has also applied to the Queensland Government’s Industry Partnership Program to assist the Project toward a Final Investment Decision (FID), construction, and plant operations.

Project Ulysses is targeting the annual production of 102 million litres of SAF and 11 million litres of renewable diesel once operational.

A domestic sustainable aviation fuel industry is critical to Australia meeting its emissions reduction targets. Our early investment in Jet Zero’s project was a vote of confidence in its viability and we’re pleased to be able to continue that support at this funding round we’re pleased to see a major international capital partner has now come on board. Producing sustainable aviation fuel onshore has the potential to create 18,000 jobs and generate AU$13 billion in economic benefits annually by 2040 in addition to increasing Australia’s domestic fuel security. With the right policy settings and support from governments, we’ll be able to capitalize on the significant benefits and natural advantages that Australia has for SAF production, said Andrew Parker, Chief Sustainability Officer at Qantas Group.

First overseas SAF project investment for Idemitsu

Andrew Parker was referring to Idemitsu Kosan Co Ltd (Idemitsu), one of Japan’s largest energy conglomerates that has joined as a new strategic shareholder.

Idemitsu Kosan is working to establish SAF production in Japan with an annual capacity of 500 million litres to achieve the government and aviation industry’s goal of replacing 10 percent of Japan’s jet fuel consumption with SAF by 2030. This investment agreement represents our first investment in an overseas SAF project and will contribute to the establishment and strengthening of the global SAF supply chain. Australia, especially Queensland, is an important business partner and we hope to build a bridge between the two countries in the world of carbon neutrality in addition to the resources business, commented Masahiko Sawa, Managing Executive Officer, Assistant to CEO of Manufacturing & Technology, Basic Chemicals and Carbon Neutral Transformation, Head of CNX Strategy Headquarters.

This marks Idemitsu’s first investment in a SAF project outside Japan.

Project Ulysses will play a very important role in the growing momentum towards decarbonizing the Australian aviation sector while providing fuel security and developing a new industry in North Queensland. The ongoing support from Qantas and Airbus, two leaders in the Australian and international aviation sectors, as well as ongoing investment from our existing shareholders Chancery Hill, Dragonfly Enviro Capital, and Audacy has remained crucial to the project’s success. We also welcome Idemitsu as a strategic shareholder with significant financial backing and capabilities in project development and renewable fuels. Alongside Qantas and Airbus, the addition of Idemitsu is a huge boost in our ability to fund the success and future development of our Australian SAF projects, ended Ed Mason, CEO of Jet Zero Australia.

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