The Race to Net Zero - Green Fuels for Aviation


The UK Government are supporting innovation to develop sustainable aviation fuels to allow us all the continued opportunity for global travel whilst safeguarding the planet.


For our clients, working collaboratively across industry to achieve the UK’s decarbonisation targets is very much in the spotlight. Sustainable aviation fuels will form part of the future fuel mix.


Oils from renewable sources

On the transition to net zero, Stopford are working with our clients to develop low carbon fuels, which provide a ‘drop-in’ replacement for fossil fuel-derived kerosene (jet fuel).


Our experts are working on development SAF with our specialist partners.


Project Insight

Stopford are partners with Clean Planet Energy (CPE). CPE are a UK company that delivers proprietary ecoPlants designed to convert non-recyclable waste plastic into ultra-clean fuel. CPE & Stopford have recently presented at DAVOS Energy week and are also involved in COP26.


CPE’s ecoPlants use a process called ThermoCatalytic Pyrolysis which, in addition to their commercially tested and patent-pending hydroprocessing upgrading process, achieve the shift from low-value pyrolysis oil properties into premium-grade, ultra-clean and negligible-Sulphur fuel.


Unlike today’s mechanical recycling processes which are restricted to a limited set of plastics, CPE’s ecoPlants can accept almost any type of plastic, including single-use plastic and plastic which is wet and dirty, tolerating ~10% of contamination (e.g., food waste); this means most of the plastic which is harming our environment can now be recycled. Each Clean Planet ecoPlant can process 20,000 tonnes of plastic a year, and their unique and sustainable design aims to make a significant positive impact on the communities wherever they are built. Currently, CPE have 2 ecoPlants in construction Phase in Teesside and Suffolk, and 4 others under development phase across England. We aim to build strong and long-term partnerships with local authorities and the private companies to enable us to grow quickly and sustainably and reach our goal of processing 1 million tonnes by 2027.


Stopford on behalf of CPE have carried out a Green House Gas (GHG) Emission study the findings demonstrate the CPE manufacturing process will result in a 47% reduction of GHG’s for all liquid hydrocarbon products compared to that of conventional fuels. The study also identified Well-to-Tank potential GHG savings of 330% (416 kgCO2e/barrel) and for Well-to-Wheel GHG savings of up to 78%.


Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF)

Low carbon fuels are defined as ‘fuels that provide high greenhouse gas lifecycle savings (>60%) when compared with their fossil equivalents’. SAF are chemically identical to fossil-derived kerosene but are produced from different raw materials and processes.


As of September 2020, around 270,000 flights have been made using ‘Sustainable Aviation Fuel’. Existing safety standards require low-carbon aviation fuels to be blended with at least 50% jet fuel. Estimates suggest that they could mitigate between 5% and 30% of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from UK aviation by 2050.


CPE have launched Clean Planet Air, for their SAF. The fuel derived from synthetic components CPE are currently in the process of obtaining the necessary approvals to meet the JIG ASTM D7566 for the manufacture of synthetic fuel blends.



Figure 1- EI JIG Standard Example routes to synthetic jet fuel components


Handling of synthetic fuel blends

Drop in fuels are completely equivalent to conventional jet fuels in terms of aircraft operations. Storage and ground handling procedures are also identical to those for conventional jet fuel. However, in the introductory period synthetic fuel blends will likely be handled in dedicated distribution facilities.


In summary

The government currently supports the development of SAF’s through its Renewable Transport Fuel Obligation (RTFO). Stopford have significant experience working with our clients on their blending facilities, over the last four decades we have grown our aviation fuel consultancy to support a global portfolio of private and blue-chip clients. Projects range from aviation and biofuels to multiproduct large scale oil terminals. Our significant experience in Jet A1 fuel installations and sustainable fuels provide us with the platform to lead the way in our provision to the aviation fuel sector.


To find out more about CPE https://www.cleanplanetenergy.com



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