Published on January 21st, 2014 | by Guest Contributor


Boeing Discovers Promising Biofuel At $3 Per Gallon

January 21st, 2014 by  

Originally published on Reviving Gaia.
By Roy L Hales.

Boeing has identified a commercially viable “green diesel” that emits 50% less carbon dioxide than conventional fossil fuels.

Biofuel research in Boeing laboratory.
Image Credit: Boeing.

It is made from oils and fats that are chemically similar to today’s aviation biofuel and, with US government incentives, costs about $3 a gallon.  That makes it competitive with petroleum jet fuel.

Were it not for the prohibitive cost, many airlines would already have been using renewable fuels.

Boeing has been a leader in this field since 2011, when a 747–8F flew to the Paris Airshow burning a B15 (15% biofuel) mix from camelina.

Together with 27 other airlines in the Sustainable Aviation Fuel Users Group, Boeing has been trying to develop a biofuel that is produced sustainably, without adverse impact to greenhouse gas emissions, local food security, soil, water and air.

“Green diesel approval would be a major breakthrough in the availability of competitively priced, sustainable aviation fuel,” said Dr. James Kinder, a Technical Fellow in Boeing Commercial Airplanes Propulsion Systems Division. “We are collaborating with our industry partners and the aviation community to move this innovative solution forward and reduce the industry’s reliance on fossil fuel.”

Significant green diesel production capacity already exists in the U.S., Europe and Singapore that could supply as much as 1 percent – about 600 million gallons – of global commercial jet fuel demand. Diamond Green Diesel and Dynamic Fuels, have facilities in Louisiana. Neste Oil, based in Finland, has large green diesel refineries in Rotterdam (Netherlands) and Singapore.

Boeing, the F.A.A., engine manufacturers, green diesel producers and others are now compiling a detailed research report that will be submitted to key stakeholders in the fuel approvals process.

“Boeing wants to establish new pathways for sustainable jet fuel, and this green diesel initiative is a groundbreaking step in that long journey,” said Julie Felgar, managing director of Boeing Commercial Airplanes Environmental Strategy and Integration. “To support our customers, industry and communities, Boeing will continue to look for opportunities to reduce aviation’s environmental footprint.”

The company is working with the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration and other stakeholders to gain approval for aircraft to fly on green diesel.  If approved, the fuel could be blended directly with traditional jet fuel.

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  • Jouni Valkonen

    Sounds to me more like that Boeing has discovered new Snake Oil. E.g. Neste Oil is infamous and it is listed as one of the most irresponsible companies in world due to heavy involvement on clear-cutting Bornean rainforests for biofuel plantations.

    cf. e.g.

    Neste Oil Selected for the list of Socially Irresponsible Companies

  • Steeple

    “…and with government incentives costs about $3/gallon”

    Is there a reason this key phrase was omitted?

    • sambar

      BECAUSE Non-bio fuel with incentives, costs about $3/gallon

    • What??……reread the second sentence.

    • Dan

      Do you mean omitted from the headline? That’s because there isn’t a single fuel sold commercially for vehicles in the US that isn’t government subsidized. Without subsidies, the real cost of petroleum fuel would be well over $6/gallon. So, the only fair comparison is after subsidies have been applied to both – at least from the consumer’s perspective, for whom this article is clearly written.

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