A Better Flight Plan

Industry Insights

A4A Participates in CAAFI Panel Discussion

Airlines for America’s (A4A) Senior Vice President of Legislative and Regulatory Policy Sharon Pinkerton participated in the CAAFI Sustainable Aviation Fuels (SAF) Summit and Biennial General Meeting in Washington, D.C., which brings stakeholders together to discuss challenges and opportunities to build a more sustainable future.

Pinkerton joined a panel discussion on U.S. policies supporting the development of SAF and the importance of government and stakeholder collaboration to advance sustainability in air travel. The discussion was moderated by Kevin Welsh, FAA, Executive Director of the Office of Environment and Energy, and Pinkerton was joined by SAF stakeholders including Austin Brown, White House Office of Domestic Climate Policy, Senior Director; Pete Bunce, GAMA, President; Nancy Young, Alder, Chief Sustainability Officer and Alex Laska, Third Way, Senior Policy Advisor.

The discussion focused heavily on the aviation industry’s partnership with the White House and the shared Grand Challenge Goal of making 3 billion gallons of cost competitive SAF available to use by 2030. SAF is produced from sustainable resources and produces 80 percent less CO2 emissions than conventional jet fuel. Therefore, if this shared goal is reached, the U.S. airline industry would be one step closer to reaching our goal of net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.

SAF is a huge priority for the aviation industry to achieve energy independence. However, there are challenges to reaching the ambitious goals the industry has set. Throughout the panel discussion, Pinkerton emphasized the importance of a SAF blender’s tax credit- a credit that would go to producers and/or other companies that blend pure SAF with conventional jet fuel to make it useable in commercial aircraft. She stated, “a blender’s tax credit is probably the most important near-term thing the government can do to move SAF toward the success of our goal to get to 3 billion gallons.”

Pinkerton also had the opportunity to introduce Michael Berube, DOE, DAS for Sustainable Transportation and Bob Jordan, CEO of Southwest Airlines for a discussion on the Government and Aviation Working together through the SAF Grand Challenge. During the discussion, Jordan announced Southwest’s investment into SAFFiRE Renewables; a company expected to use new technology developed by the DOE’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) to convert corn stover into renewable ethanol that then would be upgraded into SAF.

For more information on how A4A and member airlines are moving to a more sustainable future, visit AirlinesFlyGreen.com and the links below.

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