The flight is scheduled to depart from London – England for New York City – USA on 28 November. To complete the process, Virgin Atlantic will need to seek additional approval from regulatory agencies in the US, Ireland and Canada.
theo reutersThe above developments pave the way for decarbonization efforts of the world aviation industry despite cost challenges. SAF is currently produced only in small quantities and costs 3–5 times more than conventional jet fuel.
“We are committed to 10% SAF use by 2030, but to get there we need the government to support the establishment of a SAF industry in the UK,” said Shai Weiss, CEO of Virgin Atlantic.
An aircraft of Virgin Atlantic Airlines (UK) Photo: VIRGIN.COM
According to scientists, the aviation industry produces high levels of carbon dioxide and other emissions, which contribute to climate change.
Airlines are pinning their hopes on SAF, a fuel made from waste such as used cooking oil, to cut emissions by 70% compared to fossil fuels before flying on electricity and hydrogen in the coming decades.
SAF is already used to power jet engines in other flights, but usually only as part of a blend with conventional kerosene. Figures for 2021 show that SAF accounts for only 0.5% of the fuel used by the aviation industry.
However, many airlines aim to increase this proportion to 10% by 2030, such as Virgin Atlantic. The aviation industry further aims to achieve net zero emissions by 2050, with SAF accounting for 65% of fuel usage.