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British Airways to be the first airline in the world to use sustainable fuel produced in the UK

Sustainable aviation fuel has a lower carbon footprint and may be made from renewable feedstocks

British Airways to be the first airline in the world to use sustainable fuel produced in the UK

After striking a multi-year agreement with Phillips 66 Limited, British Airways will become the first airline in the world to use sustainable aviation fuel produced on a commercial scale in the UK.

"Thousands of tonnes of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) will be produced for the first time in the UK at the Phillips 66 Humber Refinery near Immingham and will be supplied to British Airways to power a number of its flights from early 2022," British Airways said in a statement.

SAF is a low-carbon fuel that may be made from renewable feedstocks including waste vegetable oils, fats, and greases.

The supply arrangement between British Airways and Phillips 66 Limited, a wholly-owned subsidiary of diversified energy production and logistics firm Phillips 66, furthers both companies' commitments to a lower-carbon future, according to the statement.

According to the statement, the airline will acquire enough sustainable fuel to cut lifecycle CO2 emissions by nearly 100,000 tonnes, which is the equivalent of powering 700 net zero CO2 emissions flights between London and New York on its fuel-efficient Boeing 787 aircraft.

The SAF will be manufactured at the Humber Refinery from sustainable waste feedstock and delivered to British Airways using existing pipeline infrastructure that feeds directly into UK airports.

Sean Doyle, Chairman and Chief Executive of British Airways, stated, "This agreement marks another important step on our journey to net zero carbon emissions and forms part of our commitment, as part of International Airlines Group, to power 10% of flights with SAF by 2030.

"The UK has the resources and capabilities to be a global leader in the development of SAF and scaling up the production of SAF requires a truly collaborative approach between industry and government," Doyle said.

"We are excited to develop our relationship with Phillips 66 Limited further with a view to growing production capacity and using a wider range of sustainable waste feedstocks to supply our future flights. The development of sustainable aviation fuel is a major focus for us and forms part of our commitment to achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 through a series of short-, medium- and long-term initiatives," Doyle added.

International Airlines Group (IAG), the airline's parent company, is investing USD 400 million in the development of SAF over the next 20 years, and British Airways has current ties with a number of technology and fuel businesses to create SAF plants and acquire the fuel. When compared to the old jet fuel it replaces, SAF can lower lifecycle carbon emissions by more than 80%.

The announcement, according to Humber Refinery General Manager Darren Cunningham, the Lead Executive for Phillips 66 in the UK, reflects the importance of sustainability in the aviation and energy industries, as well as the continued development, adoption, and scaling up of sustainable aviation fuel.

"The Humber Refinery was the first in the UK to co-process waste oils to produce renewable fuels and now we will be the first to produce SAF at scale, and we are delighted British Airways is our first UK customer," Cunningham said.

"We're currently refining almost half a million litres of sustainable waste feedstocks a day, and this is just a start. Markets for lower-carbon products are growing, and this agreement demonstrates our ability to supply them," Cunningham added.

Phillips 66 Limited made a big investment last year to develop its waste feedstock fuel manufacturing. According to the statement, the investment is part of a larger energy transition plan to reduce the carbon intensity of the refinery's operations and products, which supports 1,000 Humber Refinery employees.

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