British Airways applies for funding for large-scale sustainable aviation fuels production in UK

British Airways has signed an agreement with a host of aviation solutions firms to extend a project aiming to develop cost-effective sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) for commercial use in the UK

Published 3rd November 2022

British Airways applies for funding for large-scale sustainable aviation fuels production in UK

Overall, Project Speedbird has the potential to reduce CO2 emissions by up to 770,000 tonnes a year

British Airways partnered with LanzaJet and Nova Pangaea Technologies to launch Project Speedbird in 2021. The project aims to develop SAFs in the UK for commercial use.

Project Speedbird was initially granted nearly £500,000 by the Department for Transport’s (DfT) Green Fuels, Green Skies competition to fund an initial feasibility study for the early-stage development of the project. Now, the company has applied for the Department’s Advanced Fuels Fund grant for additional funding, as part of the department’s Jet Zero strategy which includes implementing a SAF mandate to come into force in 2025. This will require at least 10% of UK jet fuel to be SAF by 2030.

The process will see agricultural and wood waste taken and converted into bioethanol and biochar. LanzaJet’s patented alcohol-to-jet (ATJ) technology will then convert it into SAFs.

The conversion will take place at a UK facility, which is planned to be built in North East England. Construction could begin as early as 2023 and SAFs are expected to be produced by 2026.

British Airways intends to offtake all SAF produced through Project Speedbird to help power its flights. British Airways claims the SAFs would reduce emissions on a net lifecycle basis by 230,000 tonnes a year – the equivalent emissions of approximately 26,000 domestic flights.

Overall, Project Speedbird has the potential to reduce CO2 emissions by up to 770,000 tonnes a year.


Challenge to UK emissions trading scheme dismissed

R (Elliott-Smith) v Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy & others [2021] EWHC 1633 (Admin)

Boost for plans to develop green energy technology in the north-east

A UK Government minister has pledged to accelerate the second phase of the country's carbon capture and storage (CCS) rollout.

Climate Minister Graham Stuart has confirmed plans to speed up track 2 of the cluster sequencing process.

The Press and Journal says it is good news for Aberdeenshire's Acorn CCS project, which is widely expected to be one of the projects selected as part of the next cohort.

During a Commons debate on Tuesday, Sir Desmond Angus Swayne, Conservative Member of Parliament for the New Forest West, asked: "Will he (Mr Stuart) expedite the track 2 process for carbon capture and storage."

In reply, Mr Stuart simply said: "Yes".

There has been frustration about the government's delay in publishing a timeline for the launch of track 2.

Track 1 clusters

Around a year has now passed since the track 1 clusters - HyNet and the East Coast Cluster - were announced.

The aim is for the two schemes, located in the north of England, will be safely storing carbon from nearby emitters by the middle of the decade.

To the surprise and anger of many, particularly in the north-east, the Scottish Cluster, which includes Acorn, didn't make the cut and was instead picked as the reserve cluster.

There are concerns this will delay the start-up of Acorn, based at the St Fergus gas plant, thereby hampering investment and job creation in the north-east.

Aberdeen South MP Stephen Flynn has led calls for the Scottish Custer to be awarded funding and has written to the UK Government demanding key dates for the process are now unveiled.

He told the P&J: "This is undoubtedly very welcome news, but I am wary that we've had warm words before only to be let down.

Timeline needed

"What we now need is for the UK Government to set out a timeline with key dates for the track 2 process, including when successful bids will be announced."

A report in the summer said urgent action is needed for Britain to become a leader in CCS.

It has been estimated that the sector could be worth £100billion to the country's manufacturers between now and the middle of the century, with Aberdeen named among locations which could benefit from the new technology.

The study was produced by industry body Offshore Energies UK for the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.

2022's High Growth Economies


Data Journalist

India's GDP grew by 4.1 percent in the first three months of 2022, slightly truncating annual growth in 2021-22 to 8.7 percent due to Omicron restrictions putting a damper on economic activity in this last quarter of the Indian fiscal year. In Q1 of the new fiscal year (April to June), growth was back to 13.5 percent.

Looking at the big picture, Indian GDP growth is also still doing quite well on a global scale and the country is expected to surpass Japan as Asia's second-largest economy by 2030.

The IMF has forecast a GDP growth of 6.8 percent for India in 2022. As many countries have been downgraded in this week's release by the organization, so was India. In April, the IMF had still projected a growth of 8.2 percent for the country. However, this still places India in the top 10 of the fastest growing economies in the world (out of those with GDPs of $20 billion or more), albeit in rank 9, down from rank 4 in April. Counting all countries, even small island nations, India comes 20th.

Guyana was named as the fastest-growing economy in both forecasts by the IMF. The sparsely populated country is growing thanks to new oil exploitation projects. Ireland's growth was also revised upwards drastically, but the small nation's GDP is notoriously volatile due to the many multinationals headquartered there which are taking advantage of favorable tax codes within the EU.

Infographic: 2022's High Growth Economies | Statista

CCUS planned capacity nearing 1 billion tonnes per annum

A Wood McKenzie News Article

US Inflation Reduction Act bill set to boost CCUS uptake but more is needed to meet net zero goals by 2050

The planned global carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS) capacity pipeline has reached 905 million tonnes per annum (mtpa), with more than 50 new projects announced this quarter, says Wood Mackenzie, a Verisk business (Nasdaq:VRSK).

These findings come from Wood Mackenzie’s ‘CCUS Market Update for Q2 2022’ report.

Lucy King, Senior Research Analyst and author of the report, said: “Despite continued momentum in the CCUS pipeline, much more progress is required to meet 2050 greenhouse gas targets. Currently, the CCUS capacity pipeline is close to aligning with Wood Mackenzie’s 1.5-degree pathway to 2030, but it will need to grow seven-fold by 2050 to reach the capacity required for net zero.”

“The biggest challenge is the lack of embedded policy and regulation for CCUS projects. For most countries, the rate of growth and demand for CCUS is outpacing the respective government’s ability to legislate. Despite this, we expect 2022 to be a pivotal year for CCUS, with many countries formulating strategies, policies and regulation to support its deployment” King said.

The US is a global leader in CCUS, supported by its 45Q tax credit incentive for carbon sequestration launched in 2008. On 16 August 2022, President Biden signed the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) into law, which will enhance and extend the 45Q tax incentive.

“The Inflation Reduction Act bill will further accelerate the US’ planned CCUS capacity pipeline, which is currently at almost 250 Mtpa. It will incentivise smaller-scale capture projects, attract more industries, and promote investment into technologies including Direct Air Capture.”

Great strides have also been made for licensing and permitting for geological CO2 storage throughout Q2 of 2022. The industry has seen an increase in licensing activity in Norway, Russia and Australia, with the UK launching the ‘first of its kind’ CO2 storage licensing round which consists of 13 areas across the North Sea.

North America and Europe continue to emerge as hotspots for CCUS activity, according to latest Wood Mackenzie research. North America accounts for over two thirds of current global capacity in 2022, with activity mainly focused in Alberta, the Gulf Coast and US Midwest.

Going forward, North America’s share of global CCUS capacity is expected to reduce to 2030 as hub projects across Europe scale up.

China and Southeast Asia are forecasted to have the biggest demand for CCUS in the 2040s, but this will require further regulatory and policy implementation.


Public EV charging costs increase by 42% in four months to an average of 63.29p/kWh, says RAC

Public EV charging costs have increased by 42% in four months to an average of 63.29p/kWh, says the RAC. Image: SPEN.

Public EV charging costs have increased by 42% in four months to an average of 63.29p/kWh, says the RAC. Image: SPEN.

The cost of charging an electric vehicle (EV) at a public charger has increased by 42% from 18.75p/kWh in May to an average of 63.29p/kWh.

According to the data released by RAC Charge Watch, the increase has been a result of the ongoing energy crisis impacting the UK’s economy as a result of high wholesale gas and electricity prices.

This increase in the wholesale electricity prices recently led Osprey Charging to increase the price of its rapid EV charging network to £1/kWh amid the “extraordinary circumstances”. This increased from 40p/kWh from August 2021.


Synthetic Low Carbon Methanol

31 January 2022 by   Bioenergy International

In Zella-Mehlis in southern Thuringia, Germany the regional Zweckverband für Abfallwirtschaft Südwestthüringen (ZASt) operates a waste-to-energy (WtE) plant. By the end of 2023, a production plant for synthetic methanol will be built at that site, funded by the state of Thuringia (photo courtesy ZASt).

In a two-stage, Europe-wide tendering process, compatriot STEAG GmbH, a European designer, developer, implementer, and operator of energy plants, together with the planning and engineering company Dr. Born – Dr. Ermel GmbH, was awarded the contract as architect-engineer to design the plant and supervise its construction.

The aim of the project, for which ZASt is to invest a total of around EUR 23 million at the Zella-Mehlis site, is to produce green, climate-friendly methanol. This is widely used as a basic material in the chemical industry, for example, but can also constitute a green alternative to fossil fuels and thus contribute to the decarbonization of the mobility sector.

Visualizing 10 Years of Global EV Sales by Country



Graphics/Design: Clayton Wadsworth

ev sales by country

10 Years of EV Sales by Country

In 2011, around 55,000 electric vehicles (EVs) were sold around the world. 10 years later in 2021, that figure had grown close to 7 million vehicles.

With many countries getting plugged into electrification, the global EV market has seen exponential growth over the last decade. Using data from the International Energy Agency (IEA), this infographic shows the explosion in global EV sales since 2011, highlighting the countries that have grown into the biggest EV markets.

Read More 

UK carbon capture and storage could be worth £100 billion to local manufacturing employers

Offshore Energies UK 7/27/2022

Supply chain companies in the UK offshore oil and gas sector are in prime position to win work in carbon capture and storage (CCS) if urgent action is taken by governments and industry, a new report indicates.

CCS has been recognized as a critical technology to help energy intensive sectors, like cement and power generation, meet their net zero goals. The Government’s Net Zero Strategy says the UK will need to capture 50m tons a year by 2035.

The report, commissioned by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) and produced by industry body OEUK through the North Sea Transition Deal, finds that offshore oil and gas supply chain companies already have some capabilities in areas including plant design and engineering, plant fabrication, and construction.

It identifies 13 actions for government and industry, including the need for support from government through early-stage funding and additional licensing rounds.

It finds:

  • The UK has most of the components necessary for a successful CCS sector; a big potential market for exports of technology and expertise; large industrial clusters; extensive gas transport infrastructure; and a good scientific understanding of the geological requirements needed for long-term CO2 storage
  • CCS could be worth £20bn to the offshore oil and gas supply chain in the next ten years, and £100bn by 2050
  • The UK has an estimated total storage capacity of 78 gigatons, one of the largest in Europe and enough to hold two centuries’ worth of the UK’s current emissions
  • Government should speed up Track 2 clusters and introduce additional licensing rounds for storage sites
  • The supply chain, although suitably experienced, is fragile and the UK is at risk of losing it to more attractive opportunities elsewhere in the world if it does not secure a first-mover advantage

Securing this work in the UK will particularly benefit communities in Aberdeen, Inverness, Liverpool, North Wales, East Anglia, Lincolnshire, Yorkshire and Teesside, where the existing offshore energy industry is well-placed to expand into new sectors, including CCS.

OEUK Supply Chain and Operations Director Katy Heidenreich said:

“Carbon capture and storage is going to be a key tool in our fight against climate change. It offers a huge opportunity for the UK offshore energy supply chain to help energy intensive industries cut emissions.

“If we get this right, it could unlock £100 billion of work for UK manufacturing employers by 2050. This will support UK jobs, cut emissions, boost the economy and develop skills which can be exported globally.

“Lots of progress has been made, but without urgent action the UK will miss out on the opportunity to secure a leadership position in this exciting new sector.

“Our report sets out how we will continue to work with government to seize a first mover advantage, benefitting the economy, jobs and local communities while achieving our net zero goals.”

UK carbon-capture industry could support 50,000 jobs

The UK Government says a new carbon-capture usage and storage (CCUS) industry could support up to 50,000 jobs in the country by the end of this decade.

This emerged yesterday as new measures to propel Britain's transition to a cleaner, affordable, home-grown energy system were announced.

The Energy Security Bill was introduced into Parliament by Business and Energy Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng, and was described as the most significant piece of energy legislation in a decade.

Measures include accelerating the growth of low-carbon technologies, including CCUS and hydrogen.

Mr Kwarteng said: "To ensure we are no longer held hostage by rogue states and volatile markets, we must accelerate plans to build a truly clean, affordable, home-grown energy system in Britain.

"This is the biggest reform of our energy system in a decade. We're going to slash red tape, get investment into the UK, and grab as much global market share as possible in new technologies to make this plan a reality.

"The measures in the Energy Security Bill will allow us to stand on our own two feet again, reindustrialise our economy and protect the British people from eye-watering fossil-fuel prices into the future."

The Government says that CCUS - the process of capturing CO2 and permanently storing it deep underground - will be essential to meeting the UK's 2050 net-zero target.

Enabling infrastructure

It adds: "CO2 transport and storage networks will act as the enabling infrastructure for carbon capture and storage from a range of sources, including power plants, industrial facilities, low-carbon hydrogen production and potentially direct-air capture.

"For CCUS deployment in the UK to be successful, it is essential that there are sustainable funding models that can attract private finance at a cost that represents value for money to taxpayers and consumers.

"This Bill establishes a framework of economic regulation for the transport and storage of CO2, following consultation on commercial models to pull through the investment needed to deploy for CCUS at scale, and building upon improved understanding from previous competitions to mitigate the risks and technical and commercial challenges involved in deploying CCUS across the UK.

"The proposed CO2 transport and storage facilities supported by this Bill will establish a new CCUS industry across the UK which could support up to 50,000 jobs by 2030 and provide a total UK captured turnover of up to £8.3billion by 2050."

UK company Storegga is a key partner of a portfolio of carbon-capture and hydrogen-production proposals known as the Scottish Cluster.

The heart of the cluster is known as Acorn, which takes in key facilities across the north-east, as well as former oil and gas pipelines and North Sea sites that could be used to store CO2 permanently and safely.

Huge dismay met the UK Government's decision to snub the north-east in a £1billion funding competition last year which saw rival projects in England successful, leaving the Scottish Cluster as a reserve.

Storegga founder Alan James said yesterday: "It's great to see a continued drive for industrial decarbonisation using carbon capture and storage front and centre of the Government's Energy Security Bill, alongside the critical role of renewables deployment and efficiency drives.

Not well placed

"However, only two CO2 transport and storage infrastructure systems are progressing towards operation, and they are not well placed to provide all UK solutions.

"Nor are the two existing clusters well positioned to access the huge export market that European industrial emissions presents.

"We are calling on the Government to open up the track process for the next CCS clusters as soon as possible, and certainly before the summer recess, so that the UK can move forward quickly to decarbonise our own industrial base and create a valuable export service revenue by storing emissions from our European industrial neighbours."