• Jul 20, 2011
Those boarding Finnair flights from Amsterdam to Helsinki sometime this week will likely fly into aviation history as the passengers aboard the longest (estimated 933 miles) commercial flight powered by biofuel.

For its record-setting flight, Finnair will use a mixture of biofuel made from recycled vegetable oil (HRJ) supplied by SkyNRG and ordinary aviation fuel. At this stage, Finnair says it will conduct at least three weekly Amsterdam-to-Helsinki flights using the biofuel blend in both of the aircraft's engines. Refueling will be done at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol.

Kati Ihamäki, vice-president of sustainable development at Finnair, says that:
We want to be a pioneer in sustainable development in air transport. Engine emissions account for the biggest environmental impact of flying, so investing in research into alternative fuels is a natural way to try to reduce the load on the environment.
Not just any biofuel will do. Finnair is picky, accepting only biofuels that are "socially, ecologically and economically sustainable." For example, Finnair says the cultivation of biomass used to produce the fuel must "significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions, must not compromise food production or lead to biodiversity degradation or deforestation." Sounds like a good way to fly.

[Source: Finnair]
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Finnair in the forefront of flying on biofuel

Finnair has already for decades made a long-term commitment to sustainable development. Now is the time to take another major step towards sustainable air travel. Finnair aims to fly its first biofuel flight from Amsterdam and Helsinki next week. This will be the longest commercial biofuel flight flown anywhere in the world to date.

"We want to be a pioneer in sustainable development in air transport. Engine emissions account for the biggest environmental impact of flying, so investing in research into alternative fuels is a natural way to try to reduce the load on the environment," says Kati Ihamäki, VP Sustainable Development at Finnair.

Biofuel refers to fuel made from renewable organic raw materials. The plants used in the production of biofuel absorb carbon dioxide, which is released back into the atmosphere when the biofuel combusts.

Finnair will accept for permanent use only a biofuel alternative that is socially, ecologically and economically sustainable. For example, the cultivation of the biomass used in the production of biofuel must significantly reduce GHG emissions, must not compromise food production or lead to biodiversity degradation or deforestation.

For its first biofuel flight Finnair will use biofuel made from recycled vegetable oil (i.e. Used Cooking Oil) supplied by SkyNRG in a mixture that is 50 ordinary aviation fuel. Finnair and SkyNRG have agreed to jointly work on a structural supply chain, as both parties firmly believe that the adoption of "green routes" by airlines will help accelerate the development of sustainable and affordable jet fuels, which have the potential to reduce aviation emissions by up to 80 biofuel blend in both engines. Refuelling is done at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol.


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