Sustainable Aviation Fuels Certification with ISCC
One of the greatest challenges of our time is the fight against climate change. The urgent need to lower greenhouse gas emissions has also been recognised by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and the aviation industry. ICAO Member States have set ambitious targets to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions from air transportation, including carbon-neutral growth from 2020 and beyond. CORSIA, the Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation, is ICAO’s instrument to address the increase in total CO2 emissions from aviation.
The figures show that these targets are challenging. Until 2020, the global number of flights has been rising for decades. In 2018 alone, over 4,3 billion passengers got on a plane – 62% more than in 2010. Three main reasons are often cited to explain these developments: booming low-cost carriers, a growing global middle class, and an increasing airport infrastructure (led by the Asia Pacific region). It is expected that the global passenger traffic will return to pre-COVID levels in 2024, and subsequently further increase.
To combat rising emissions, the aviation industry is investing in alternative fuel concepts with potential environmental benefits. Compared to conventional fossil fuels, sustainable aviation fuels (SAF) have the potential to cut emissions substantially. Therefore, the deployment of sustainable aviation fuels is highly important to meet increasing demands and lower greenhouse gas emissions at the same time.
Beyond sustainable aviation fuels, the concept of “Lower Carbon Aviation Fuels” (LCAF) is based on prospective technologies that may allow the production of fossil fuels with a lower carbon footprint, such as carbon capture, utilization and storage and the use of renewable energy in oil refineries.
Nevertheless, it is important to verify compliance with voluntary or mandatory sustainability criteria. In 2016, a set of sustainability criteria for CORSIA eligible SAF was approved by the ICAO council. CORSIA eligible fuel should generate lower carbon emissions on a life cycle basis and not be made from biomass obtained from land with high carbon stock.
CORSIA’s criteria for eligible fuel include:
- At least 10% net GHG emissions reductions compared to the baseline life cycle emissions values for aviation fuel on a life cycle basis
- No land use change of land with high carbon stock (primary forests, wetlands and peatlands) on or after 01 January 2008
As a well-experienced sustainability certification scheme, ISCC can guarantee compliance and enhance traceability through site-specific audits. ISCC’s vast experience in road transportation is of high value when it comes to certifying sustainable aviation fuels. Since large volumes of certified feedstock are already available and many major fuel producers are ISCC members, SAF certification with ISCC is feasible and practical.
Interested in certifying sustainable aviation fuels?
Decarbonising the Aviation Sector
The certification of sustainable aviation fuels is important to helping the aviation industry reduce its greenhouse gas emissions. The article “Decarbonising the Aviation Sector” (published in Biofuels International on 16 October 2019) provides detailed insights into the latest trends and developments, the current demand and supply of sustainable aviation fuels (SAF), the regulatory framework of SAF certification, as well as sustainability criteria of the CORSIA framework.
CORSIA Sustainable Aviation Fuels (SAF) Certification with ISCC
ISCC is active in CORSIA, ICAO’s Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation that addresses the increase in total CO2 emissions from international aviation above 2020 levels. The article “CORSIA Sustainable Aviation Fuels Certification with ISCC” (published in the ICAO 2019 Environmental Report) gives an overview on SAF certification with ISCC and explains how ISCC certification can support the implementation of CORSIA
ISCC wants to advance the idea of SAF certification. That is why we are present at important aviation events and invite leading aviation experts to our own ISCC meetings and conferences.
Sustainable aviation fuels at ISCC meetings and conferences (2019)
ISCC Regional Stakeholder Meeting North America, Las Vegas, USA (19 November 2019)
- Dr Bruno Silva, Environment Officer, ICAO
Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA) and Sustainable Aviation Fuels
- Karen O’ Brien, Process Engineer, Gevo
Sustainable Aviation Fuel and the Circular Economy
ISCC Technical Stakeholder Meeting “Waste, Residues and Advanced Low Carbon Fuels”, Shanghai, China (02 July 2019)
- Robert Boyd, Senior Manager, IATA
Sustainable Aviation Fuels
- Yee Chow, Lead Manager Procurement, Cathay Pacific Airways
Implementation of Low Carbon Fuels in International Aviation
- Bruno Miller, Managing Director, Fulcrum BioEnergy
Converting MSW into Low-Cost Low-Carbon Fuel
ISCC Global Sustainability Conference, Brussels, Belgium (14 February 2019)
- Jonas Rorarius, Head of Supply Chain Compliance, Neste
Deployment of Sustainable Aviation Fuels
ISCC at external aviation events (2018/2019)
aireg – Sustainable Aviation Fuel Conference, Berlin, Germany (17 – 18 October 2019)
The conference brought together 200 international aviation enthusiasts from the fields of politics, business and science. Dr Norbert Schmitz (Managing Director, ISCC) participated in a panel discussion about regulatory framework conditions.
ICAO Stocktaking Seminar towards the 2050 Vision for Sustainable Aviation Fuels, Montréal, Canada (30 April – 01 May 2019)
The seminar provided a forum for the exchange of information related to sustainable aviation fuels. Dr Norbert Schmitz (Managing Director, ISCC) spoke about advancements related to the sustainability of aviation fuels.
IATA Alternative Fuel Symposium, Singapore (15 – 16 November 2018)
The symposium provided a platform for industry professionals to interact with each other and get informed about new developments in sustainable aviation fuels. Prof. Gernot Klepper (Chairman of the ISCC e.V. board) discussed key strategic considerations for stakeholders in the SAF industry during a panel discussion.