Cathay Pacific has signed an offtake agreement with Aemetis for the supply of 38 million gallons of blended sustainable aviation fuel (SAF), with delivery scheduled to start in the next 3 years.
Cathay Pacific chief Augustus Tang said the airline hopes it sends the right signal to the SAF industry to encourage the much-needed investment and scaling up of its supply chain.
Under the agreement, Aemetis will start delivering the supply in 2025 from San Francisco International Airport and continue for the next seven years. The blended SAF to be supplied under this agreement is 40 percent SAF and 60 percent Jet A-1 fuel, which will be produced at a plant currently under development in Riverbank, California.
The facility will use waste wood to produce cellulosic hydrogen, and combine it with wastes and non-edible sustainable oils, which will then be converted into SAF using hydroelectricity.
Cathay estimates that the amount of SAF purchased can reduce more than 80,000 tonnes of carbon emissions, equivalent to the amount of carbon sequestered by more than 1.3 million tree seedlings grown for 10 years.
Aemetis believes SAF is an immediate solution to the decarbonisation of air travel and cargo flights, without the need for extensive new fuelling infrastructure or the expensive replacement of planes.
The agreement is part of the joint procurement initiative for SAF by the oneworld alliance, of which Cathay Pacific is a founding member.