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Aviation biofuels have potential for enormous CO2 reductions, ATAG says

ATW Daily News 28 Mar.11

Life cycle assessments of "just some of the [aviation] biofuel sources that have been explored show in excess of an 80% improvement on the fossil fuel currently used," in terms of the reduction in carbon dioxide emissions, according to a just-released report from the Air Transport Action Group. "Powering the Future of Flight" tracks ongoing aviation biofuel initiatives around the world and identifies six steps that government and policy makers could follow to speed the process of bringing biofuels into the airline industry in meaningful quantities: "Foster research into new feedstock sources and refining processes; de-risk public and private investments in aviation biofuels; provide incentives for airlines to use biofuels from an early stage; encourage stakeholders to commit to robust international sustainability criteria; understand local green growth opportunities; and establish coalitions encompassing all parts of the supply chain."

The report says that the air transport industry aims to replace 6% of its fuel with biofuel in 2020:

"The biggest challenge now lies in ensuring a steady, reliable, cost-effective and sustainable supply of this new energy source. The fossil fuel industry has had a century to develop its fuel sources, supply chains and distribution networks. Not to mention its profit margins. The fledgling aviation biofuels industry will need to catch up and this will require capital from the investment community and start-up incentives and de-risking from governments," ATAG Executive Director Paul Steele said. For more information, visit http://www.flyonbiofuels.org.

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