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Heathrow Becomes First Airport To Power Jets With Sustainable Fuel

Heathrow Airport has become the first major airport in the UK to fuel short-haul flights with sustainable aviation fuel.


The endeavour, a proof of concept test in conjunction with Vitol Aviation and Neste, will initially provide enough sustainable fuel in a tank fitted with a vacuum relief valve to support up to 10 short-haul flights.


Heathrow stated in a press release that if this “critical first step” is a success, then it will open the door to using sustainable fuels in the aviation industry on a wider scale.


Creating jet fuel that is sustainable and less carbon-intensive has more complications than petrol or diesel, in part because jet fuel requires a lot of additives and an exceptionally low freezing point to ensure it can be stored at high altitudes.


To that end, Heathrow decided not only to work with Neste MY, a business that specialises in creating biofuels that are 100 per cent made from renewable materials, sustainable waste and residue such as cooking oils and animal fat, but also Vitol Aviation to adapt the fuel for aviation use.


The three organisations claim that the fuel that they are using reduces greenhouse gas emissions by up to 80 per cent, and Heathrow themselves have called on the UK Government to require that at least 10 per cent of all fuel used by airlines to be sustainable in origin by 2030.


This proposed mandate would increase to 50 per cent by 2050 to ensure consistent work towards sustainability and global net-zero carbon dioxide emissions.