Biofuels – United Turns into First U.S. Airline to Spend money on Biofuel Refinery

NEXT is a Houston-based firm creating the biorefinery which, at full manufacturing, may produce as much as 50,000 barrels per day of Sustainable Aviation Gasoline (SAF), renewable diesel, and different renewable fuels. UAV may make investments as a lot as $37.5 million into NEXT, so long as the corporate meets sure milestone targets.

“Proper now, one of many greatest limitations to rising provide and reducing prices of sustainable gas is that we do not have the infrastructure in place to move it effectively, however NEXT’s strategic location and belongings remedy that drawback and supply a blueprint for future services that should be constructed,” stated Michael Leskinen, President of United Airline Ventures.

“We consider this funding won’t solely bolster NEXT’s ambitions and create near-term options to increase our SAF provide, however additional demonstrates our dedication towards producing SAF on the scale essential to decarbonize the aviation business.”

NEXT’s biorefinery affords a number of distinctive advantages together with entry to a deep-water port, an present industrial-grade dock, and multi-modal logistics choices, which facilitates entry to feedstock choices and fast-growth SAF offtake markets on the west coast. NEXT has secured an settlement with BP for sourcing one hundred pc of its feedstock, additional de-risking provide points smaller services have traditionally skilled.

NEXT has additionally acquired a vital air allow from the State of Oregon. As soon as all the required approvals and permits are obtained and the biorefinery is operational, it has the potential for use as a platform to scale SAF and deploy extra future applied sciences.

“The clear fuels business is taking off and our entry to feedstocks, multi-modal distribution, and main business gamers positions us to be a number one SAF provider on the West Coast,” stated Christopher Efird, CEO and Chairperson of NEXT. “United’s funding in NEXT strengthens our resolve to be one of many clear fuels leaders within the transportation sector.”

The announcement marks UAV’s fifth SAF-related expertise funding, and its first funding immediately in a biorefinery. United has been an business chief in advocating for various jet gas for years – together with investing in additional SAF manufacturing than another airline on the earth and flying the world’s first passenger flight utilizing 100% SAF in a single engine. United additionally launched the Eco-Skies Alliance program, which amongst its 30 company members, has collectively bought greater than 7 million gallons of sustainable aviation gas.

Launched in 2021, UAV is a first-of-its-kind sustainability-focused ventures fund that targets startups, upcoming applied sciences, and ideas that can complement United’s aim of internet zero emissions by 2050 – with out counting on conventional carbon offsets akin to voluntary offsets or planting bushes. So far, UAV’s portfolio contains SAF producers and different firms advancing applied sciences together with carbon utilization, hydrogen-electric engines, electrical regional plane and air taxis.