Alaska Airlines is set to use sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) made from municipal solid waste following a partnership with SkyNRG Americas, claimed to be the pioneer and global leader for SAF. Alaska Airlines is one of the most fuel-efficient airlines in the U.S. with a strong commitment to sustainability.
It was among the first airline to use SAF in passenger travel, flying nearly 80 flights over the past decade, to reduce its intensity target of greenhouse gas emissions by 16 percent since 2012.
Alaska Airlines and SkyNRG are already in a deal for supply of SAF and this partnership is increasing their investment commitment for SAF to be produced from municipal solid waste. This is part of the airline’s long-term plan to reduce carbon emissions and its impact on the planet.
Alaska Airlines said it has been working for more than a decade to advance SAF technology and viability. With this partnership, the airline will partner SkyNRG to advance truly sustainable production of SAF and develop supply in the Pacific Northwest.
Under this partnership, SkyNRG Americas will initially focus on developing dedicated SAF production facilities to supply Western U.S. airports. These facilities will use commercially available technologies that enable the use of municipal solid waste and other waste-based inputs as feedstocks, as well as incorporating green hydrogen and renewable energy for minimizing carbon intensity.
SkyNRG Americas and Alaska Airlines will also continue to build awareness and understanding of SAF technologies, and advocate for public policies to accelerate the development of the SAF industry and infrastructure.
In October last year, Alaska Airlines partnered Microsoft with the aim to use SAF to offset Microsoft employee travel between Seattle and San Francisco, San Jose and Los Angeles. The airline is already using SAF, supplied by SkyNRG, which is an important option for the aviation industry to reduce carbon (CO2) emissions on a life-cycle basis.
Instead of being refined from petroleum, SAF is generally produced from sustainable resources, like waste oils and agricultural residues. The SAF currently being supplied to Alaska Airlines by SkyNRG is produced in the U.S. by World Energy using waste oils and delivers a carbon reduction of approximately 75 percent compared to fossil jet fuel.
Microsoft, Alaska Airlines and SkyNRG are also supporting the development of a global environmental accounting standard for voluntary corporate SAF purchases through their participation in a pilot project of the World Economic Forum’s Clean Skies for Tomorrow initiative.
Meanwhile, United Airlines has made the airline industry’s single largest investment in SAF and has purchased more SAF than any other airline in the world. World Energy, a long-term partner of United, will supply the SAF to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), which makes it conveniently accessible to United’s operations.
United airlines has also launched a first of its kind Eco-Skies Alliance program, which gives customers the ability to contribute funds for additional SAF purchase or for use on initiatives United believes will help decarbonize aviation.
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