UAE passenger jet makes long haul journey on locally produced biofuel

The Boeing 787 was powered by biofuel produced in the UAE and flew from Abu Dhabi to Amsterdam. (AFP)
Updated 17 January 2019
0

UAE passenger jet makes long haul journey on locally produced biofuel

  • The biofuel was produced from plants grown in a local saltwater ecosystem in Abu Dhabi
  • It can be refined using existing infrastructure and used with current engines and airport fueling systems

DUBAI: Etihad Airways flew the first commercial flight powered by locally produced sustainable fuel Wednesday, Emirati airlines Etihad Airways reported on their website from an announcement by the Sustainable Bioenergy Research Consortium (SBRC).

The Boeing 787, flying from Abu Dhabi to Amsterdam, used biofuel produced from the oil of Salicornia plants, which are grown in the Seawater Energy and Agriculture System (SEAS), in Masdar City near the UAE capital - Abu Dhabi.

The SEAS project is the world’s first desert ecosystem made specially to produce fuel and food in saltwater.

While Etihad is not the first airline to use biofuel in its aircraft, it is the first time in the UAE for the source of the biofuel to be grown and produced in the country.

“Etihad’s flight proves SEAS is a game-changer that can substantially benefit air transport and the world,” said Vice President of strategy and market development for Boeing International Sean Schwinn.

“The research and technology being developed shows significant promise to transform coastal deserts into productive farmland supporting food security and cleaner skies.”

The biofuel can be produced using existing refinery facilities, it can be blended with regular jet fuel, and used with existing aircraft, engines and airport fueling delivery systems

Biofuels were introduced for commercial flight use in 2011.

Since then nearly 160,000 passengers have flown on flights powered by a blend of sustainable and traditional jet fuels.

The water used for the SEAS project is drawn from fish and shrimp farmeries that produce food for the UAE.

The system is expected to expand to cover 2 mln square meters over the course of the next few years.


China to lure foreign investment in state giants

Updated 4 min 4 sec ago
0

China to lure foreign investment in state giants

  • China began a new round of reforms in 2016 aimed at streamlining its lumbering state-owned enterprises

BEIJING: China will seek to attract foreign investment in its larger state-owned enterprises (SOEs), which are undergoing reforms to make them more competitive, the head of the country’s state asset regulator said.
China began a new round of reforms in 2016 aimed at streamlining its lumbering SOEs by introducing private capital, curbing overcapacity, shutting down “zombie” subsidiaries and restructuring assets.
Private and foreign firms should “actively participate in reform and development of central enterprises, and jointly explore ways of deep cooperation including mixed-ownership,” Xiao Yaqing, chairman of the State-Owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission (SASAC), said on the regulator’s website on Sunday.
China has been promoting “mixed-ownership” reforms aimed at introducing private capital and management methods into giant central government SOEs. The SASAC will also support investment by state giants in private and foreign firms, Xiao said, without giving details.