Aviation, Biofuel Orgs Urge Lawmakers To Support SAF

 - May 18, 2023, 11:13 AM
(Photo: Pixabay)

Thirty-five aviation and biofuel industry organizations appealed to key House and Senate lawmakers to prioritize funding in the fiscal 2024 budget to accelerate the development and deployment of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF). In a joint letter sent to the Appropriations Committee leaders in both chambers, the organizations asked that “robust” funding be included for the Department of Energy’s Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) and the FAA’s NextGen environmental research programs.

“Aviation is widely recognized as one of the hardest modes of transportation to decarbonize, and SAF, an alternative jet fuel that is cleaner than conventional petroleum fuel, will play a key role in reducing this sector’s greenhouse gas emissions,” said the organizations. “Continued federal investments in research, development, and demonstration (RD&D) are essential to lower costs, unlock new, cleaner ways of making these fuels, and to foster a competitive SAF market.”

The groups asked for $323 million for BETO, which they said is “one of the most important RD&D programs working on bioenergy in the federal government,” adding the program has helped make biofuels from a wide range of feedstocks more affordable. Further, they noted, BETO grant funding has been used throughout the U.S. to make SAF production more efficient and create markets for feedstocks.

In addition, they are seeking $70.8 million for FAA NextGen environmental research programs, which the organizations said are also essential to the scaling of SAF, as well as for aiding in the development of aircraft technologies that can reduce emissions.

The letter was signed by a range of organizations from business aviation groups such as NBAA and NATA to fuel providers such as Avfuel and World Energy.