AEF: Claim that new jet fuel from waste will massively…

aef:-claim-that-new-jet-fuel-from-waste-will-massively…

AEF: Claim that new jet fuel from waste will massively…

AEF: Claim that new jet fuel from waste will massively cut aviation CO2 is dangerously misleading
2021-03-17 16:39:00
UK Government has launched new funding to spur the development of “sustainable aviation fuel” (SAF) from waste. There have been claims that US scientists have found a way to ‘massively reduce carbon emissions from flying’. The benefits of the novel way to make jet fuel are exaggerated. The Aviation Environment Federation (AEF) says that the claims require some very dodgy carbon accounting. They are adding the methane that might be generated by decomposing rubbish, and assumptions about carbon emissions – but ignoring the CO2 emissions produced when the fuel is burnt. In fact these emissions would be slightly higher, from waste-derived fuel, than conventional fuel, as it has a slightly higher carbon content.  A better way to prevent methane from rotting landfill waste would be to cut food waste, divert biodegradable rubbish away from landfill sites and use methane capture technologies there. Cait Hewitt of AEF said “any government incentives for use of alternative fuels for aviation will need very clear and transparent guidelines to ensure that they actually cut aviation emissions, to avoid this kind of accounting smokescreen in future.” Government is  In the meantime, cutting back on flying is easily the best way of reducing aviation emissions.” .Tweet   CLAIM THAT NEW FUEL FROM WASTE WILL MASSIVELY CUT FLYING EMISSIONS IS DANGEROUSLY MISLEADING 16th March, 2021 By AEF (Aviation Environment Federation) A press story yesterday[1] claimed that US scientists had found a way to ‘massively reduce carbon emissions from flying’. In fact, though, the ‘up to 165%’ emissions reduction claimed by the report authors arises largely from supposed savings as a result of preventing methane emissions that would otherwise arise from landfill, together with ‘carbon credit incentives’ for using energy sources other than fossil fuels. When the fuel is burnt in an aircraft the emissions it generates would actually be higher, the authors admit, than from burning conventional fossil fuels, as a result of its slightly higher carbon content[2]. Methane generated by rotting landfill waste is a powerful greenhouse gas. Cutting food waste, diverting biodegradable rubbish away from landfill sites and putting in place methane capture technologies can all help to tackle these emissions. For the UK to achieve net zero, these steps need to be delivered in addition to – not instead of – the decarbonisation of aviation. The BBC story was published the day before the UK Government launched new funding to spur the development of Sustainable Aviation Fuel from waste[3]. There will also be a consultation this year on potential mandates for the purchase of ‘sustainable aviation fuels’ with a view to stimulating the market for these fuels, which are currently significantly more expensive than kerosene (which remains untaxed). AEF deputy director Cait Hewitt said: There seems to be some very dodgy carbon accounting behind the claim that this fuel will cut emissions from flying. Genuine answers to the aviation emissions problem are in fact still few and far between. Any government incentives for use of alternative fuels for aviation will need very clear and transparent guidelines to ensure that they actually cut aviation emissions, to avoid this kind of accounting smokescreen in future. Including international aviation emissions in carbon budgets would be one

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