Gazprom Neft Highlights Focus on Sustainable Aviation Fuel in Russia

July 30, 2021

Gazprom Neft has highlighted its technological capabilities during roundtable discussions on decarbonization of the air transport industry and the reduction of CO2 emissions held at MAKS-2021 Air Show.

Representatives from Airbus, Rolls Royce, Neste, Aeroflot, Volga-Dnepr and the Civil Aviation Research Institute took part in the discussion which focused on the introduction of new types of aircraft and the production of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF).

Gazprom Neft shared its experience of launching JET A-1, the international fuel brand, into commercial production at the Omsk Refinery this year as well as its experience in the development, production, and distribution of new types of products.

Anton Dianov, head of strategic development programs, commercial directorate, Gazprom Neft, said: “Together with airlines, aircraft manufacturers and government regulators, we are ready to start the research required to manufacture and certify SAF in Russia. Gazprom Neft Technological Centre for Industrial Innovations in St. Petersburg can serve as a platform for the development of “green” aviation fuel. The capability of the Centre allows for a full cycle of fundamental research and a subsequent pilot industrial development.”

Tatiana Turanskaya, head of quality management department, Aeroflot, said: “Aeroflot takes an active part in Government programs to create carbon regulation legislation. We are ready to work with all participants in the aviation market and to support the implementation of SAF certification initiatives in Russia aimed at addressing environmental issues. Today only modern aircraft operate in the airline's fleet and many environmental initiatives are being implemented on a voluntary basis. Aeroflot undergoes voluntary certification for compliance with ISO 14001 and complies with all international requirements in the field of environmental regulation.”  

Nikolay Glushnev, global production director, Volga-Dnepr Group, commented: “The issue of decarbonization of the aviation industry is of great importance. There are already several initiatives in terms of fuel efficiency, proposals for the development of biofuels and GoGreen projects. We need to unite the efforts to achieve a real effect and put the issue to the state regulation level. We are focused on the step-by-step implementation of the environmental policy and development programme of the Volga-Dnepr Group. One of our top priorities is maintaining environmental sustainability through the efficiency of our business processes, which means a modern fleet, fuel consumption reduction initiatives as well as the commercial component when we guarantee the maximum load of our aircraft.”

Oleg Maltsev, head of the aviation fuel supply department of the State Research Institute of Civil Aviation, added: “Before starting the use of biofuels in Russia, it is important to have a regulatory framework and standards. The State Research Institute of Civil Aviation is ready to take part in the development of this promising project. We will be happy to assist in the study of the operational properties of fuel, the development of a regulatory framework, as well as in the development of ways to modernize the ground infrastructure.”

Jonathan Wood, VP Europe-Aspac, renewable aviation, Neste, said: “SAF is increasingly available as production scales up in Europe, N America and Asia, and in its neat form enables up to 80% reduction in aviation emissions compared with fossil jet fuel, measured with established life cycle assessment (LCA) methodologies, among which are EU RED and CORSIA.  Government policy can play a key role in encouraging demand with incentives to promote the use of SAF, or by mandating a certain proportion of all aviation fuel to be SAF - this is already the case in Norway, Sweden and France (2022), and according to the recent EU announcement the whole of the EU will move to a SAF mandate which will increase each year from 2025 onwards. At Neste we are taking a lead by investing $1.5bn  to grow our SAF production capacity from 100kt pa to 1.5mt pa in 2023. We look forward to collaborating with the other major players on this roundtable to make SAF available to Russian carriers as soon as possible.”