Greentech Lead Asia: Australian airliner Qantas flew the
country’s first commercial biofuel flight between Sydney and Adelaide using a
mix of conventional fuel and refined cooking oil.
The flight was a commercial first in Australia, and would
have produced far less carbon emissions than if conventional jet fuel were
used. The biofuel component of the fuel used for the flight was from refined
“We’re talking about a 60 per cent reduction in the
overall life cycle of the fuel, so that’s a substantial improvement,” John
Valastro of Qantas told ABC News.
The flight has cost more than four times an equivalent
flight using normal fuel, partly because of the shipping distance involved
since the fuel came from Houston.
Qantas absorbed the one-off cost because it is keen to
highlight the need for an Australian biofuel source, at a time when airlines
and passengers around the world are dealing with high jet fuel and carbon
The Federal Government has given the airline A$500,000 to
fund a study into the feasibility of alternative aviation Biofuels.
Establishing a sustainable aviation fuel industry is
necessary given the immediate challenges ahead, according to Alan Joyce, chief
“We need to get ready for a future that is not based on
traditional jet fuel or frankly we don’t have a future. From July, Qantas will be
the only airline in the world to face liabilities in three jurisdictions, so
our sense of urgency is justified,” said Alan Joyce, chief executive, Qantas.