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Boeing to work with Etihad Airways and others to develop a sustainable aviation biofuel in the United Arab Emirates

Boeing (Chicago), Etihad Airways (Abu Dhabi), Takreer, Total and the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology today announced they will collaborate on a new initiative to support a sustainable aviation biofuel industry in the United Arab Emirates.

BIOjet Abu Dhabi: Flight Path to Sustainability will engage a broad range of stakeholders to develop a comprehensive framework for a U.A.E. biofuel supply chain. This initiative will focus on research and development and investments in feedstock production and refining capability in the U.A.E. and globally.

Etihad Airways showed the promise of this homegrown effort yesterday with a 45-minute demonstration flight in a Boeing 777 powered in part by U.A.E.-produced sustainable aviation biofuel. The biofuel was partially converted from plants by Total and refined into jet fuel by Takreer, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Abu Dhabi National Oil Co. (ADNOC). U.A.E. is now among a handful of countries that have produced and flown on their own aviation biofuel, which emits at least 50 percent less carbon dioxide than fossil fuel over its lifecycle.

Boeing and Etihad Airways are also among the founding partners of the Sustainable Bioenergy Research Consortium, hosted by the Masdar Institute in Abu Dhabi. The consortium has been researching and developing salt-tolerant plants that would be raw material for the same refining processes used to produce renewable fuel for the Etihad Airways flight.

The flight and BIOjet Abu Dhabi announcement lead into Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week and the World Future Energy Summit. These activities and Masdar Institute’s aviation biofuel research are aligned with the Abu Dhabi Economic Vision 2030, which seeks to develop sustainable energy sources to diversify the U.A.E. economy and increase workforce opportunities for Emiratis.

Etihad Airways is an airline industry leader in supporting the development of lower-carbon renewable fuels. A member of the Sustainable Aviation Fuel Users Group (SAFUG), the airline operated the Gulf region’s first biofuel flight in January 2011 with a Boeing 777 delivery from Seattle to Abu Dhabi powered by a blend of petroleum-based and certified plant oil-based jet fuel.

Boeing collaborates with airlines, research institutions, governments and other stakeholders to develop sustainable biofuel supply chains around the world, including the United States, Middle East, China,Brazil, Europe and Australia.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Etihad Airways’ Boeing 777-3FX ER A6-ETG (msn 39681) with special “Abu Dhabi Grand Prix 2014 Formula 1” emblems arrives in Bangkok.

Etihad Airways: AG Slide Show