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‘Magical thinking’: hopes for sustainable jet fuel not realistic, report finds

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By illuminem briefings

· 2 min read

illuminem summarizes for you the essential news of the day. Read the full piece on The Guardian or enjoy below:

🗞️ Driving the news: A report by the Institute for Policy Studies argues that the aviation industry's reliance on sustainable aviation fuels (SAF) to reduce carbon emissions is unrealistic
• It claims there is no scalable alternative to kerosene-based jet fuels within the necessary timeframe to avert climate disaster

🔭 The context: The U.S. aims to produce 3 billion gallons of SAF by 2030 to cut aviation emissions by 20%
• However, achieving this target would require an almost 19,000% increase in production from 2022 levels, highlighting the enormity of the challenge

🌍 Why it matters for the planet: Although marketed as eco-friendly, sustainable aviation fuels still produce significant CO2 emissions and require extensive land use changes, potentially undermining global climate goals and threatening food security by converting agricultural land to fuel production.

⏭️ What's next: The aviation industry faces a steep challenge in decarbonization, with major technological and economic hurdles to overcome in developing truly sustainable fuel alternatives
• The industry's slow progress on these fronts suggests a tough road ahead in achieving its environmental goals

💬 One quote: "It’s a huge greenwashing exercise by the aviation industry. It’s magical thinking that they will be able to do this," said Chuck Collins, co-author of the report.

📈 One stat: The target for sustainable aviation fuel production by 2030 represents an 18,887% increase over 2022 levels.

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