KLM Invests in 75,000 Metric Tons of Sustainable Aviation Fuel Per Year

by | May 28, 2019

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KLM Royal Dutch Airlines has committed itself for a 10-year period to the development and purchase of 75,000 metric tons of sustainable aviation fuel a year. KLM is the first airline in the world to invest in sustainable aviation fuel on this scale.

SkyNRG, global market leader for sustainable aviation fuel (SAF), will develop Europe’s first dedicated plant for the production of SAF in Delfzijl. The production facility will specialize in producing SAF, bioLPG and naphtha, primarily using regional waste and residue streams as feedstock. The plant will be the first of its kind in the world. The construction of this facility, which is scheduled to open in 2022, is a step towards fulfilling KLM’s sustainability ambitions and contributing to the broader industry plan “Smart and Sustainable.” SHV Energy will also invest in the facility and will purchase the bioLPG produced.

Sustainable aviation fuel is a necessary short-term option the commercial aviation industry has, to reduce CO2emissions in the short term, in addition to fleet renewal and operational efficiency gains. However, not enough sustainable kerosene is currently being produced. The new production plant is a SkyNRG project, called DSL-01, and will be dedicated to production of sustainable aviation fuel. From 2022, the plant will annually produce 100,000 tons of SAF, as well as 15,000 tons of bioLPG, as a by-product. It will mean a CO2 reduction of 270,000 tons a year for the aviation industry.

The feedstocks used for production will be waste and residue streams, such as used cooking oil, coming predominantly from regional industries. The facility will run on sustainable hydrogen, which is produced using water and wind energy. Thanks to these choices, this sustainable aviation fuel delivers a CO2 reduction of at least 85%, compared to fossil fuel.

The use of SAF will also contribute to a significant decrease in ultra-fine particles and sulphur emissions. The construction of this facility is very much in line with KLM’s sustainability objectives and is an important step towards implementing the industry action plan “Smart & Sustainable,” which was drafted by 20 transport organizations and knowledge centers. Amsterdam Airport Schiphol will also be investing in the development of this facility.

SkyNRG’s independent Sustainability Board advises on whether the fuel meets the highest sustainability standards, thereby ensuring that the fuel (produced from waste streams) will not have a negative impact on the food supply and environment. There will be absolutely no use of food crops, such as soya oil and palm oil (or by-products such as PFAD and POME), for production. The board includes representatives from WWF International, the European Climate Foundation, Solidaridad Network and the University of Groningen. Furthermore, the sustainability of the chain and related products are ensured through certification by the Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials (RSB), the highest possible certification standard for sustainable fuels.

 

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