July 6, 2022
Neste, Itochu Deliver Japanese SAF to Etihad Airways
Airlines Industry Innovation

Neste, Itochu Deliver Japanese SAF to Etihad Airways

DALLAS – Neste and Itochu have delivered Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) to Etihad Airways (EY), the first time a foreign carrier has used SAF from Japan.

The EY Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner carrying SAF took off from Tokyo-Narita International Airport (NRT) earlier today.

This SAF flight fits into the airline’s “greenliner” program, using the novel jet fuel among other sustainable solutions to reach zero emissions by 2050. The airline signed partnerships with international companies to ensure production and delivery of sustainable fuels, which can be mixed with classic fuels.

Etihad often flies to NRT using Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft. Photo: Alberto Cucini/Airways

Neste, Itochu

Neste is a company that focuses on developing sustainable solutions to tackle climate change. Neste describes itself as “the world’s leading producer of sustainable aviation fuel and renewable diesel and developing chemical recycling to combat the plastic waste challenge.”

While Neste is based in Finland, it also has refineries in Singapore and Japan. By the end of 2023, the company wants to expand its SAF production capacity to 1.5 million tons per year, including the future Singapore refinery.

For its part, Itochu is a major trading company based in 60 countries. As part of a partnership with Neste to make SAF more available, Itochu is the branded distributor of the new jet fuel. For now, the company offers SAF at Japan’s two largest airports: Tokyo-Narita (NRT) and Haneda (HND).

With five flights per week in June, EY represents 0.7% of the seat offer from NRT airport, according to airlinedata.com. Photo: Alberto Cucini/Airways

Executives’ Comments

“This delivery of our Neste MY Sustainable Aviation Fuel to Etihad is a major step forward in further growing the use of our sustainable aviation fuel in the Japanese market,” said Sami Jauhiainen, Neste’s Vice President, Asia-Pacific for Renewable Aviation.

He added, “Our partnership with ITOCHU aims to support domestic and international airlines and other fuel suppliers at Haneda and Narita International Airports in accelerating the adoption of SAF to reduce the carbon emissions of flying. I’m excited to see this partnership is already achieving concrete results, and I look forward to supporting more airlines in Japan going forward.”

“We are glad to be the first company to supply SAF to an overseas airline in Japan. ITOCHU will continue to cooperate with Neste and airlines departing from Japanese airports, and contribute to the decarbonization of the airline industry through the stable supply of SAF”, explained Tsuyoshi Matsumoto, the company’s general manager of Petroleum Trading Department.

Tony Douglas, CEO of EY, said, “Etihad has committed to achieving net zero emissions by 2050 and reducing our 2019 emissions by 50 percent by 2035. For SAF to become a viable mid-term solution for aviation decarbonization, it requires collaboration between governments, corporates and the aviation industry to increase SAF supply and availability at airports so that it can be adapted more broadly.”

He also added, “Our partnership with ITOCHU and Neste is an example of the type of industry collaboration required to bring widespread SAF adoption to the industry. We are extremely proud to be the first international airline to procure and use Japanese supplied SAF on flights departing Japan.”

With these partnerships, Neste and Itochu should be able to deliver more SAF to carriers at Tokyo’s major airports. This milestone is also an opportunity for EY to underline its efforts towards sustainability.

Featured image: Neste’s SAF is called “Neste MY Sustainable Aviation Fuel”. Photo: Neste

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