Qantas Airways and Airbus said yesterday they have committed $200 million (€190.6m) to accelerate the development of a sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) industry in Australia to help meet the airline’s goal of reducing carbon emissions. Will invest up to
The agreement, which was announced on the sidelines of global airline industry body IATA’s annual meeting in Doha, Qatar, is in line with Qantas’ goal of using 10pc SAF in its fuel mix by 2030.
This comes after the airline placed a multi-billion dollar order for Airbus narrowbody and widebody aircraft last month.
The global airline industry, aiming to reach net-zero emissions by 2050, is dependent on the use of SAFs to grow from about 100 million liters (26 million gallons) per year in 2021 to at least 449 billion liters per year within three decades, Which represents a huge and costly undertaking.
Qantas is sourcing SAFs in London and Los Angeles but not in Australia. “The problem is there is no sustainable aviation fuel industry in Australia and we want to buy it in a big way,” Qantas Irish CEO Alan Joyce told reporters.
“We think the way to do this is to put our money where our mouth is.”
The investment, which includes the $35m (€33.4m) of funding previously committed by Qantas, could go to a mix of start-up firms and more established operators and could include equity investments, Mr Joyce said.
He said the funding would be split between Qantas and Airbus, with a small contribution from Raytheon Technologies-owned engine maker Pratt & Whitney.
Qantas has placed an order for Pratt & Whitney engines for its new Airbus Narrowbody fleet.
Airbus chief executive Guillaume Faury said the deal with Qantas was “unique” because of recent aircraft orders and Australia’s isolated location. Mr Fauri also said it was not expected to be repeated with other airlines.
The companies said the SAF investment partnership will last for an initial five years with the option to extend that time frame.
Mr Joyce said he hoped this would encourage the Australian government to reform the policy framework and help support the development of the local SAF industry.
He said Qantas had promised early talks with the new centre-left government, which was elected last month.