Environmental Stewardship

Airports and airlines meet, with a focus on carbon footprints,alternative fuels

“That’s a few more years down the road, because there’s a lot of development that needs to take place between this step of getting biocrude and turning it into an actual jet fuel,” Webb says Further down the road is the “holy grail” of alternative fuels — a fuel made from greenhouse gas emissions. The Department of Energy’s renewable energy lab worked on algae for nearly 20 years before shutting the program down some five years ago “because it was so hard to get all of the processing steps nailed down,” Webb says.

He explains that making such a fuel would require collecting carbon dioxide emissions from coal power plants, mix it in with water, reactors, algae. From that, a combination of lipids and gas will be produced, which can then be processed and turned into a variant of jet fuel.

“Sounds like a win-win,” Webb says. “It will be, but there’s a lot of development that’s got to go on.”

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