SAF-related developments have been gradually showing up all over the world over the past years. A historic endeavor is coming up in Sweden, where an airport will ask aircraft to use only green jet fuel for refueling. This is the Trollhattan-Vanersborg Airport, located in the southwest of Sweden. All aircraft refueling here will only have access to alternative fuel, which is an industry first and a world first.
This drastic measure will hopefully help cut GHG (greenhouse gas) emissions on departing flights. The alternative fuel is not pure green jet fuel because international regulations only allow a mix of 50% SAF (at most) and conventional diesel. This is why the Swedish airport will provide clean fuel produced and supplied by Neste in a 30 to 40% blend with standard fuel.
And that's not all. A Swedish airline will also become the world's first to start using this blend for all its flights. Vastflyg plans to use the Neste SAF blend offered at the Trollhättan-Vanersborg Airport to power regular inter-city flights in Sweden and all charter flights from Trollhättan.
Other larger airlines are moving in the same direction but taking smaller steps. United Airlines started using SAF at the Los Angeles International Airport more than five years ago. It added Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam in 2022, which will be joined this year by San Francisco Airport and London Heathrow Airport.
United Airlines and Trollhattan-Vanersborg Airport have the same SAF supplier, Neste. This is no surprise, with the Finland-based company officially becoming the world's largest SAF producer earlier this year. Neste operates two European refineries and recently expanded a third one in Singapore. This will help it increase production to 1.5 million tons of SAF per year and reach an unprecedented capacity of 2.2 million tons annually by 2026.
Neste's alternative fuel claims to be entirely sustainable, obtained from sources like used cooking oil and animal fat waste. It promises to reduce GHG emissions by 80% throughout its life cycle.
The Swedish airport will replace all conventional jet fuel with a blend of Neste SAF at the end of this month for all-green departure flights.