Boeing sees potential in ‘green diesel’ as sustainable jet fuel

'Green diesel' made from oils and fats could be used to fuel aircraft, according to new research by Boeing.

The company says green diesel, a renewable fuel used in ground transportation and chemically different to biodiesel, could provide a significant new source of sustainable aviation biofuel that emits at least 50% less carbon dioxide than fossil fuel over its lifecycle.

Working with the US Federal Aviation Administration and other stakeholders, Boeing is seeking to gain approval for aircraft to fly on the fuel, which could be blended directly with traditional jet fuel if approved.

Enough green diesel production capacity already exists in the US, Europe and Singapore to supply as much as 1%, or about 600 million gallons, of global commercial jet fuel demand. The wholesale cost is competitive with petroleum jet fuel, at around $3 a gallon with US government incentives.

A detailed report on green diesel will be compiled and submitted to key stakeholders in the fuel approvals process in due course. Biofuel approved for aviation must meet or exceed very strict jet fuel performance requirements.

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