British Airways has announced it will start producing jet fuel made from waste destined for landfill in order to reduce its carbon emissions.
The airline is partnering with US bio-energy firm Solena Fuels to create the world’s first facility in Essex to produce sustainable aviation fuel.
According to BA, the sustainable jet fuel “produced each year will be enough to power our flights from London City Airport twice over with carbon savings the equivalent of taking 150,000 cars off the road”.
“The plant will use refuse derived fuel (RDF), produced from municipal solid waste (MSW). The RDF is produced by sorting out the recyclable materials such as plastics, metal cans and glass, and shredding the remaining residue, which is high in biogenic and organic content. This material would otherwise be sent to landfill.
“We aim to use RDF with a high carbon biomass from residual waste. That is the fraction of waste left after all the recyclable materials have been removed,” A BA spokesman said.
“This will come from a mix of sources including domestic and industrial to feed the production of the biofuel which, during its lifecycle and production, will result in high savings in greenhouse gas emissions.
“RDF is produced by several waste management companies and could be delivered to the Greensky facility in Bales.”
About 575,000 tonnes of waste normally destined for landfill or incineration will be converted into 120,000 tonnes of clean burning liquid fuels.
BA has made a long-term commitment to purchase all 50,000 tonnes a year of the jet fuel produced as part of the GreenSky project.
One thousand construction workers will be hired to build the facility which is due to be completed in 2017, creating up to 150 permanent jobs at the Thames Enterprise Park, part of the site of the former Coryton oil refinery in Corringham.