United Airlines To Use Biofuel In L.A. Flights By 2014

Published on Wednesday, 05 June 2013 By 2014, United Airlines will be using sustainable aviation biofuel on their flights departing from LAX. United has executed a definitive purchase agreement with AltAir Fuels to buy 15 million gallons of lower-carbon, renewable jet fuel over a three-year period, with the option to purchase more. AltAir expects to begin delivering five million gallons of renewable jet fuel per year to United starting 2014. “This is a great day for United and the aviation biofuels industry. This agreement underscores United’s efforts to be a leader in alternative fuels as well as our efforts to lead commercial aviation as an environmentally responsible company,” said United’s Managing Director for Global Environmental Affairs and Sustainability Jimmy Samartzis. AltAir develops and operates projects for the production of low carbon fuels and chemicals derived from sustainable feedstock. As part of their strategic partnership with United, AltAir will retrofit part of an existing petroleum refinery to become a 30 million gallon advanced biofuel refinery near Los Angeles. “United Airlines has been a strategic partner for several years as we work to establish our biofuel facility,” said AltAir’s Chief Executive Officer Tom Todaro. “We cannot overestimate how important this milestone is for the commercialization of sustainable aviation biofuels, and we at AltAir are proud that United is our first customer.” Using a process technology developed by Honeywell’s UOP, the AltAir facility will convert non-edible natural oils and agricultural waste into renewable jet and diesel fuels. These advanced biofuels will be drop-in replacements for petroleum-based fuel, providing the same performance with at least a 50 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions on a lifecycle basis. The agreement with AltAir is in line with United Airlines’ commitment to sustainable aviation. A signatory to the Sustainable Aviation Fuel Users Group, United signed a pledge to pursue the advancement of drop-in biofuels that achieve important sustainability criteria, work with leading organizations to achieve biofuel certification standards and take actions to enable commercial use of aviation biofuels. In 2009, United became the first North American carrier to perform a two-engine aircraft flight demonstration using fuel derived from algae and jatropha. They also operated the first flight by a North American commercial airline using synthetic fuel made from natural gas in 2010 and in 2011 operated the first U.S. commercial flight power by advanced biofuels from Huston to Chicago. – EcoSeed Staff Taylor Scott International

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