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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.
by Amy Lupica, ODP Staff Writer Less than two weeks after being confirmed, Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm has announced that the Biden administration is resuming an Obama-era program that gave billions in loans to clean energy companies. Granholm, during talks at the CERAWeek energy conference on Wednesday, pointed the clean energy businesses the Department of Energy loan program […]
by Natasha Lasky, ODP Staff Writer The world desperately needs more sources of emissions-free energy, yet as these power sources are brought online, we must also contend with their impact on animals and ecosystems. In California, government officials are trying to rescue California condors, which are critically endangered, from being killed by the blades of […]
In the wake of one of the largest power losses in United States history, the conversation about green energy in Texas is back in the headlines. Emily Holden and two other investigative reporters collaborated on a story that ran in The Guardian, The Texas Observer, and San Antonio Report exposing how the Texas Gas Service was successful in significantly watering down a plan by the city of Austin to reduce the use of natural gas there in the future.
Why This Matters: The oil industry has spent billions to manipulate the national conversation around green energy.
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