With a mission to reach net-zero by 2050, the business aviation community—which includes fixed base operators (FBOs), airports, corporate flight departments and original equipment manufacturers (OEMs)—needs reliable access to sustainable aviation fuel (SAF). Avfuel, a leading global supplier of aviation fuel and services, recognized this need early on and began looking for the right partners to meet the industry’s growing demand.
Given Neste’s expertise in renewable fuels and its fast-growing production capacity of SAF, Avfuel chose Neste as its strategic partner in January 2021 to develop an efficient and continuous supply of Neste MY Sustainable Aviation FuelTM throughout North America and overseas. Such a collaboration enables business aviation to achieve its sustainability goals faster by getting more SAF into aircraft.
- More than 1 million gallons of blended Neste MY Sustainable Aviation Fuel supplied since the partnership began
- One of the first fuel distributors to supply SAF to business aviation
- A consistent supply of SAF at 9 FBOs nationwide and counting
Helping business aviation reach net-zero
Business aviation is an integral component of the aviation industry as a whole. It enables business leaders and policy makers to travel and work collaboratively; lives to be saved by transporting vital medical equipment, transplants and patients around the world; crops to be grown and transported across borders; people to enjoy cultural activities; people to access remote communities; and so much more. As a thriving subset of the transportation system, operators are increasingly finding SAF is an essential asset to immediately reduce life-cycle greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, helping to reach business aviation’s lofty net-zero goals by 2050.
Given its role as a leading fuel provider, Avfuel was quick to recognize the importance of SAF to the future of business aviation. Avfuel established SAF as a foundational piece of its sustainability portfolio, alongside developing a voluntary carbon offset program that helps the company and its customers achieve net-zero by investing in green projects, and a book and claim program to make the benefits of SAF more widely accessible for those who run operations in locations without access to the physical SAF molecules.
The challenge, however, was to find a company able to provide SAF in commercial volumes.
With Neste’s fast-growing SAF production capacity within North America and Avfuel’s global distribution expertise, it was easy for the companies to see the value in a mutually-beneficial partnership.
Neste’s goal of supporting its customers to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions perfectly aligns with Avfuel’s commitment in promoting environmentally responsible operations at each of its properties and for its customers. With Neste’s 20-year head start in creating a transparent, traceable, end-to-end SAF supply chain, Avfuel’s team knew it could be confident the SAF it provides to customers is made in a way that protects human rights, air, water and forests. This is an important value proposition for the duo, giving passengers confidence their flight is both low emission AND sustainable—powered by SAF made and distributed by two companies deeply committed to sustainability.
With the commencement of the partnership, Avfuel became one of the first U.S. companies to supply select customers with SAF on a consistent basis. Today, Avfuel holds regular inventory of Neste MY Sustainable Aviation Fuel at 9 FBOs. Together, Avfuel and Neste enable business aviation to fly with a smaller carbon footprint, helping to accelerate its adoption throughout the industry.
“We’re very pleased to be at the forefront of efforts to mitigate the environmental footprint of aviation operators around the globe,” said Matthew Wright, general manager of Monterey Jet Center. “Our collaboration with the Monterey Regional Airport, Neste and Avfuel [was] long in development. To do our part in leading the way for the future of aviation fuel was important to us so that we could actually make a difference for future generations, and offer flight departments and operators a real pathway for decreasing their impact on the environment.”
It takes a long time for change to occur in aviation. For instance, the 747 was first built in the late 60s and there’s still many of them flying today. Our goal is not to be the ‘747 model’ for the evolution of fuel; but rather, let’s see how much SAF we can get out there safely, efficiently and quickly. A big part of that is going to be our alignment with Neste.
– Keith Sawyer, Manager of Alternative Fuels, Avfuel Corporation
A joint responsibility
Neste and Avfuel are committed to accelerating the transformation of the supply chain powering business aviation—moving away from petroleum-based jet fuel by increasing the available supply of SAF.
Whenever establishing a new location, Avfuel works closely with Neste to map out the entire supply chain to ensure all regulations for transporting and blending the fuel are met, and to handle the logistics of its distribution. Neste helps Avfuel ensure a seamless transition, from sourcing the SAF, to transporting the fuel in its neat form and blending the product.
Avfuel’s customers rely on it to supply quality, on-spec fuel. It is the biggest and most important element of its brand value; Neste helps ensure that, together, they deliver on-spec fuel 100% of the time.
Safety is a top priority for the aviation industry, which is why Avfuel and Neste continue to focus on educational initiatives, making customers aware that SAF is a drop-in fuel, requiring no modifications to engines or infrastructure. This negates costs to switch to sustainable alternatives. In fact, aircraft powered by SAF perform just as well as aircraft fueled by traditional petroleum-based jet fuel, but with the added benefit of significantly reducing emissions across the fuel’s lifecycle.
Flying more sustainably
With solutions used to support more than 650 branded FBOs in North America and Europe, as well as approximately 25 locations operating as a proprietary network of FBOs within the Avfuel family, Avfuel’s scope of operations is exhaustive. In further expansion of its global reach, Avfuel can service customers traveling to 3,000+ fueling locations worldwide with its contract fuel program. With Avfuel’s international reach, and Neste’s fast-growing global SAF supply chain spanning three continents, this partnership marks a crucial step in accelerating the transition to low-emission fuels and helping the aviation industry reach its climate goals.
Since the partnership began, Avfuel has delivered more than 1,200,000 gallons of blended Neste MY SAF. As demand for low-carbon fuel options continues to ramp up, Avfuel expects to increase delivery capacity and expand access to Neste MY SAF.
Beyond its nine FBO supply locations, Avfuel also provides Neste MY SAF for events—including operators traveling to sporting events, such as the Super Bowl—to corporate flight departments looking to integrate SAF’s use into their company’s ESG metrics, and to OEMs like Textron Aviation.
Working with OEMs
In February 2021, Avfuel began supplying the aircraft manufacturer, Textron Aviation, with Neste MY Sustainable Aviation Fuel on an ongoing basis at its Wichita, Kan., headquarters. Using SAF aligns with Textron’s commitment to meet the aviation industry’s goals for reducing carbon emissions. Avfuel also began supplying SAF to Textron’s rotorcraft division, Bell Textron, in Fort Worth, Texas, to incorporate the fuel into all Bell Training Academy and customer demonstration fleet aircraft. This was the first rotorcraft customer to receive SAF from Avfuel.
Furthermore, in the summer of 2021, Avfuel announced a collaboration with Embraer to supply Neste MY Sustainable Aviation Fuel to Florida’s Melbourne Orlando International Airport, supporting Embraer’s commitment to climate action and achieving carbon neutral operations by 2040. Embraer is using SAF in ongoing operations at its executive jet headquarters at the airport.
Piloting the aviation industry’s first circular economy in the US
Through the partnership between Neste and Avfuel, Dallas Fort Worth International Airport (DFW), the second busiest airport in the world, became the first airport in the U.S. to implement a circular economy fuel model.
The process began at DFW, where Neste subsidiary, Mahoney Environmental, collected used cooking oil from more than 200 concessionaires serving passengers throughout the airport. Neste then converted this waste material into renewable fuels. Avfuel closed the loop in this pilot demonstration by supplying Neste MY Sustainable Aviation Fuel, produced from raw materials sourced at DFW, back to DFW Corporate Aviation, the airport’s full-service fixed-base operator, for consumption by business aviation customers. The 8,000-gallon demonstrative load of SAF to DFW was used for Avfuel’s business aviation customers and reduced carbon emissions by 19 metric tons, which is equivalent to reducing the emissions of 70 passenger cars to zero over the course of a year.
The successful delivery of SAF produced from raw material sourced right there at the airport, marks a major milestone in the industry’s sustainability initiatives and serves as a model that can be applied across the country. Contributing to a closed-loop system offers a simple, cost-effective solution that airports, businesses, cities and any other entity that generates waste can implement to achieve their climate goals faster.
As a leader within its industry and a leader in sustainability, Avfuel plans to offset all annual carbon emissions generated from Scope 1 and 2 activities from 2020 onward, in addition to its positive impact by offering SAF to its customers, helping reduce emissions.
Together, Avfuel and Neste are chartering a transformational journey for business aviation, providing and advocating for sustainable solutions that assist customers in decreasing their carbon footprint. As more capabilities emerge around logistics and production, Neste and Avfuel will continue to expand Neste MY SAF supply more efficiently to give travelers in a broader geographic region the option to fly more sustainably.