Jet zero

Jet zero

One of the hardest of environmental and ecological nuts to crack is carbon net zero for the aviation industry. The announcement that, in 2023, Virgin Atlantic will fly a Boeing aircraft fitted with with Rolls Royce Trent 1000 engines across the Atlantic using solely sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) is, therefore, a milestone moment.

The initiative is part of the Government’s Jet Zero Strategy and the team behind the endeavour includes the University of Sheffield Energy Institute which opened its new  Sustainable Aviation Fuels Innovation Centre in June 2022.

The primary feedstock for SAF is currently waste oils and fats, such as used cooking oil, but there will still be a requirement for carbon offsetting for the flight to achieve carbon neutrality. For the aviation industry as a whole to achieve net zero there will be a requirement for SAF technologies to continue to develop and for there to be a massive increase in sustainable feedstock production. That is likely to create significant opportunities for our farming and landowning clients but probably also another job for a future Land Use Commission if the Government accepts the recently published recommendations of the House of Lords to establish one.

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