Qantas will purchase blended sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) from next month, helping to reduce its carbon emissions by around 10 per cent for its flights from London.
It is the first time an Australian airline will purchase SAF on an ongoing basis for regular scheduled services.
The national carrier has signed an agreement with strategic partner bp to purchase 10 million litres of SAF in 2022 with an option to purchase up to another 10 million litres in 2023 and 2024 for flights from Heathrow Airport. This represents up to 15 per cent of Qantas’ annual fuel use out of London.
The fuel will be produced with certified bio feedstock from used cooking oil and/or other waste products. This is then blended with normal jet fuel.
The use of SAF is increasing globally – particularly in Europe, the UK and United States – as governments and industry work together to find ways to steadily decarbonise the aviation sector.
Qantas is in discussions about accessing SAF at its other overseas ports, such as Los Angeles, and recently joined other oneworld airlines in signing a memorandum of understanding to use SAF for flights from San Francisco from 2024. These volume agreements are crucial to bringing the cost of SAF down, which can be several times more expensive than traditional jet kerosene.
While Qantas and Jetstar have flown several demonstration flights using SAF – including a flight across the Pacific in 2018 powered by biofuel derived from mustard seeds – this is the first time an Australian airline will purchase SAF on an ongoing basis.
Last month, Qantas Frequent Flyer announced a world-first Green membership tier which will rewards members for making sustainable choices at home and when they travel.