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Boeing, the world’s largest aerospace company, recently announced that all of its planes will be capable and certified to fly on 100% sustainable aviation fuels by 2030. The move was a response to mounting pressure felt by the aviation industry to reduce emissions and as Boeing explained in a statement, sustainable fuels offer the “safest and most measurable solution to reduce aviation carbon emissions in the coming decades.
As Bloomberg NEF explained, the aviation industry added more than 1 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere in 2019. In the United States, aircraft contribute 12% of U.S. transportation emissions, and account for 3% of the nation’s total greenhouse gas production. While air travel did decrease during the pandemic, before that air travel was expected to double in the next 20 years. It’s imperative that the industry finds a way to reduce its emissions quickly.
Opportunities in Greening Air Travel: Boeing said that its sustainable jet fuels can be comprised of inedible plants, agricultural and forestry waste, non-recyclable household waste, and gases released by industrial products. Yet the challenge will lie in finding sustainable feedstocks for this fuel that don’t jeopardize ecosystems.
Boeing has been experimenting with sustainable jet fuel options since 2008 and in 2018, flew a Fedex 777 Freighter entirely on sustainable fuels, the first plane to fly without a conventional fuel blend.
As a manufacturer of aircraft, Boeing joins Delta Airlines (the world’s largest airline), United Airlines, and JetBlue in a commitment to lowering carbon footprints. Delta pledged to become “carbon neutral,” by 2030 and planned to invest $1 billion in achieving the goal, while JetBlue announced that it would be the first U.S. airline to pledge to offset all domestic flights. United Airlines had previously committed $40 million to sustainable aviation development. Meanwhile, British Airways owner IAG, Qantas and Etihad, as well as the entire U.K. aviation sector, have all decided to work together to reach net-zero emissions by 2050.
If Boeing can achieve its goal of selling airplanes capable of running on sustainable fuels, it can become a more formidable competitor to Europe’s Airbus who has made a public commitment to being a leader in sustainable aviation.
Scaling production of EVs in the U.S. will require a ramp-up in domestic battery production. Now there’s good news on that front. A battery factory in Georgia can move forward after LG Energy Solution and SK Innovation (South Korean companies), two of the world’s biggest electric vehicle battery manufacturers, settled a dispute.
Why This Matters: The dispute threatened U.S. production of EVs. SK has contracts to produce batteries for electric Ford F-150 pickup trucks and Volkswagen SUVs.
by Ashira Morris, ODP Staff Writer Right now, 95% of American public school buses run on diesel fuel, but that could soon change thanks to part of the Biden administration’s massive infrastructure proposal. The new Clean Buses for Kids Program would electrify at least 20% of the country’s iconic yellow school bus fleet. It would […]
by Amy Lupica, ODP Staff Writer In February, the governors of Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, and Delaware voted unanimously to ban fracking in the Delaware River Basin, but Republican-led lawsuits are seeking to stop this action. The ban prevented the natural gas industry from blasting up to 4,000 wells in the basin, serving a blow to the […]
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