From the Executive Director: Earth Day 2019

I want to wish each of our CAAFI collaborators, a very Happy Earth Day 2019. We are just one year away from the 50th anniversary of the very first Earth Day in 1970, and the need for a concerted effort to improve the global sustainability is even clearer today than it was in 1970. This includes aviation, and, as usual, the industry accepts the challenge.

A key difficulty for the aviation industry is the expected continued growth in demand for aviation transport and the associated risk of increasing total emissions. To overcome this challenge, the aviation industry has been continuously improving the fleet fuel efficiency.

Multiple stakeholders from across the aviation and alternative fuels sectors have also been assisting with development and deployment of a wide range of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) options, and have established tools and models to help with SAF assessments and supply chain developments. We have a need for fuel options other than petroleum-based fuels to address other sector challenges including supply surety, energy security, and price stability.

Commercial aviation will most likely continue to use liquid hydrocarbon fuel as the primary energy source for aircraft for the next 40+ years, but hopefully from more and more renewable sources. We do expect to see greatly improved aircraft and operational efficiency to achieve the ICAO Carbon Neutral Growth target from 2020. Leveraging efficiency improvements and SAF, we hope to see the aviation industry start on a downward trend toward the ICAO 50% emissions reduction goal by 2050. We’re working towards a more sustainable aviation future with the tools we have at hand. Through R&D of all aspects of the SAF supply chain, and the methodical continuous deployment of commercial-scale biorefineries, we can and will reduce our carbon emissions.

We believe we will see an increase of initial commercial successes that validate our overall SAF approach in the coming two years. And, there is a lot more to follow. On this Earth Day 2019, we appreciate your assistance in helping the industry meet its goals.

-Steve Csonka, CAAFI Executive Director

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