On Tuesday 2nd October 2018, Virgin Atlantic marked a historical moment for green aviation. The Boeing 747 used to operate the VS16 flight from Orlando to London Gatwick was partly powered by jet fuel made from recycled industrial waste from a steel mill.

The company LanzaTech which makes the alternative fuel blend report that third-party estimates show its fuels reduce greenhouse gas emissions by more than 70 percent in comparison to burning the same amount of jet fuel, significantly lowering aviation’s carbon footprint. The fuel blend was 5% recycled however the sustainable element is said to eventually form up to 50%.

Virgin Atlantic is calling for government support to enable LanzaTech to open three UK plants by 2025 which could potentially produce up to 125m gallons of the jet fuel blend each year.

The LanzaTech chief executive, Jennifer Holmgren, said:

“We have shown that recycling waste carbon emissions into jet fuel is not impossible, that waste carbon needs to be thought as an opportunity not a liability, that carbon can be reused over and over again.”

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