The world’s first flight from the US to Australia by a jet powered by biofuel has taken place.
Qantas flight QF96 flew from Los Angeles to Melbourne took 15-hours and used approximately 24,000kg of blended biofuel, saving 18,000kg in carbon emissions.
Qantas used biofuel processed from Brassica Carinata, a non-food, industrial type of mustard seed, developed by Canadian-based agricultural-technology company, Agrisoma Biosciences.
Qantas International CEO Alison Webster said it was fitting that the airline’s Dreamliner 787-9 made the flight.
“The Qantas Dreamliner marks an exciting new era of innovation and travel. The aircraft is more fuel efficient and generates fewer greenhouse emissions than similarly sized-aircraft and today’s flight will see a further reduction on this route.
“Our partnership with Agrisoma marks a big step in the development of a renewable jetfuel industry in Australia – it is a project we are really proud to be part of as we look at ways to reduce carbon emissions across our operations.”
Across its lifecycle, using Carinata-derived biofuel can reduce carbon emissions by eighty percent compared to traditional jet fuel.
The ten percent biofuel blend used on today’s flight will therefore see a seven percent reduction in emissions on this route compared to normal operations.
In 2012 Qantas and Jetstar operated Australia’s first biofuel trial flights. Qantas’ A330 Sydney-Adelaide return service and Jetstar’s A320 Melbourne-Hobart return service were both powered with biofuel derived from used cooking oil (split with 50:50 convential jet fuel) certified for use in commercial aviation.