Saturday 10/23/21

Finnair to test Neste's so-called 'sustainable aviation fuel'

The collaboration between both companies serves as a showcase for other businesses with "ambitious climate commitments."
Finnair aircraft on the ground. Photo: Mikko Pylkkö/Finnair.
Finnair aircraft on the ground. Photo: Mikko Pylkkö/Finnair.

Finnish energy company Neste has announced that national flag carrier Finnair will test its so-called Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF).

According to a press release, Neste has recently made 300 tons of its 'green fuel' solution available at Helsinki Airport in Finland for Finnair's use, with the aim to encourage other companies to use it as well.

The pretext used by Neste is that with this test they want "to reduce carbon emissions related to Neste employees' business travel" by using SAF.

"By replacing part of the fossil jet fuel with SAF on its flights departing from Helsinki airport, Finnair will reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 900 tons of CO2 equivalent. This represents a significant share of the emissions accumulated from Neste's employees' global air travel in 2020," the release says.

According to Neste, "Finnair is one of the most frequently used airlines" for business trips of its staff.

Commercial goals

However, the company admits in the statement that other of its objectives are purely commercial and advertising. As Neste explains, it is about this collaboration serving as a "showcase" for other companies.

"The collaboration between Neste and Finnair also serves as a showcase for other businesses, since it offers a clear solution on how to reduce business air travel emissions," the company adds.

Finnair vice president, Sustainability, Anne Larilahti says: ”Sustainable aviation fuels are a key element in our ambitious CO2 emissions reduction targets.” “Solving the climate challenge of aviation requires contribution from all stakeholders. Companies can reduce the environmental footprint of their business travel by choosing direct routes, flying with airlines that have a fuel-efficient fleet, and by choosing to fly with SAF. We are excited to partner with Neste in this.”

Attract other airlines

In that sense, Neste’s aim is to make this product available for other businesses, public institutions and other organizations with "ambitious climate commitments."

“We are extending the invitation to other companies and collaborating airlines to partner with Neste, making business travel more sustainable and future-fit. It is now a great time to prepare for when business travel takes off again," the company says.

As part of the pilot project, the energy company has arranged to supply altogether 500 metric tons of SAF in Europe and North America to the airlines most frequently used by its staff on their business travels.

The volume already provided for Finnair’s use is included in the total. 

Neste says that replacing fossil jet fuel with such an amount of its product would significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions.