British Airways announced that it is partnering with U.S.-based Solena Group to build the first European commercial plant that will produce jet fuel from municipal solid waste streams like food scraps, grass, and tree cuttings, as well as agricultural and industrial waste. What is striking about the BA announcement is the size.  Solena will annually convert 500,000 tons of waste into 16 million gallons of jet biofuels.  Some in the industry believe that coal-to-liquid via Fischer-Tropsch technology is the only scalable technology for alternatives to petroleum-based aviation fuel, but CTL fuel actually releases 118.5% more greenhouse gases than conventional fuel. Since aviation petroleum accounts for 30%-50% of an airline's operating costs and comprises 13% of global transport emissions (including 2% of global carbon dioxide emissions), it is imperative that more of these third-generation biofuel projects get funded.


Dr. Stephen R. Humphrey, Director,
School of Natural Resources and Environment,
Box 116455, 103 Black Hall, University of Florida
Gainesville, FL  32611-6455  USA
Tel. 352-392-9230, Fax 352-392-9748