British Airways owner IAG secures ‘largest’ sustainable aviation fuel deal

British Airways owner International Airlines Group has secured its largest sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) purchase with a US firm amid a shortage of options in Europe.

The 14-year deal will see the group’s five airlines supplied with next-generation e-SAF made from made from CO2, water and renewable energy. 

Californian carbon transformation firm Twelve will supply IAG with 260 million gallons, about 785,000 tonnes, of e-SAF to support BA, Iberia, Aer Lingus, Vueling and Level. The cost was not disclosed.

The first deliveries to IAG from a new plant are due to start in early 2025, with the group aiming to fly with 10% SAF by 2030. IAG has now secured one-third of the SAF needed to reach the 2030 target.

The fuel will reduce lifecycle greenhouse gas emissions by up to 90% versus conventional jet fuel, according to IAG, which said it bought approximately 12% of the global supply of SAF in 2023.

IAG is the first European airline group to confirm an e-SAF deal, and the agreement will enable IAG to continue increasing its use of the fuel.

This deal brings a scale-up of e-SAF, produced using power-to-liquid technology, one step closer to reaching its full potential in the aviation industry. 

IAG said that e-SAF does not face feedstock limitations, has a “high degree” of emissions reduction versus conventional jet fuel and has a relatively low land and water-use footprint.

Chief executive Luis Gallego said: “We have a roadmap to achieve net zero by 2050 including a target to fly with 10% sustainable aviation fuel by 2030. 

“The shortage of sustainable fuel globally continues to be a problem for our industry although innovative companies like Twelve are an important part of the solution.  

“This new deal will contribute towards our 2030 SAF target. We would like to see similar projects scale in Europe, and we look forward to working with governments across our key markets to build a SAF industry to deliver jobs, economic growth and a stable supply of SAF.” 

Twelve co-founder and chief executive Nicholas Flanders added: “We are proud to partner with IAG on this historic deal to advance sustainable aviation with our e-SAF that has up to 90% lower emissions than conventional jet fuel. 

Our power-to-liquid E-Jet fuel offers industry-leading emissions reduction potential with the added benefits of an abundant feedstock supply and significantly smaller land and water footprints compared to alternative SAF pathways.”

Share article

View Comments

Jacobs Media is honoured to be the recipient of the 2020 Queen's Award for Enterprise.

The highest official awards for UK businesses since being established by royal warrant in 1965. Read more.