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Study for Dutch Government shows the potential role of synthetic fuel in aviation

Sustainable low carbon aviation fuels are foreseen to play an important role in reducing aviation GHG emissions. Renewable synthetic kerosene can be produced from biomass feedstock and from renewable electricity combined with CO2 (or CO) from a range of sources. E4tech undertook an in depth study to assess the energy, CO2 and cost implications of renewable and low carbon synthetic kerosene production, providing an evidence base to inform policy-making in this area. International and national policies are being developed to reduce aviation GHG emissions, including the Netherlands’ draft Civil Aviation Policy Memorandum 2020-2050 aimed at GHG emissions reduction targets and this study offers insights into the benefits of synthetic routes.

What is the role of direct air capture in sustainable aviation?

E4tech was commissioned by Transport & Environment (T&E) to assess whether, when and how direct air capture (DAC) could be scaled up to make e-kerosene at the scale needed to decarbonise European aviation. Decarbonising aviation will require significant ramp up of sustainable aviation fuels, including e-kerosene, a fuel produced by combining renewable hydrogen with carbon dioxide (CO2). T&E wanted to know how feasible it would be to do this using CO2 captured from the air, through DAC. This is particularly timely, as the European Commission is preparing to launch Refuel EU aviation, an initiative to boost supply and demand for sustainable aviation fuels in the EU, which is expected to include a target for use of e-kerosene.

What could the European cellulosic ethanol industry achieve by 2030?

The cellulosic ethanol industry is at a critical development stage; there are technology developers who are taking stock of the lessons learnt during the development of their first plants, and several more are constructing or planning their first plant. E4tech has undertaken a study on behalf of the European cellulosic ethanol industry to understand the deployment potential of the technology in the coming decade. This is important to determine the impact the industry can have on renewable energy use in the transport sector and its decarbonisation to 2030 and beyond.

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