Business & Invest | Published on: 17th November 2023
Making Teesside the UK capital of creating low-carbon aviation fuel has taken a big leap forward after a major funding boost.
Almost £40million from the Department for Transport’s Advanced Fuels Fund has been awarded to five Teesside-based firms leading the way in creating Sustainable Aviation Fuel.
The total award in the latest round of the fund was £53million – with companies with operations in the region taking home 75 percent of the grant cash on offer.
Arcadia e-Fuels (£12.3million), Nova Pangaea Technologies (£9.1million), Alfanar Energy (£8.7million), Abundia Biomass-to-Liquids (£4.5million), and Willis Sustainable Fuels (£4.7million) were successful in their bids.
The region’s long-standing chemical engineering expertise has seen several firms opt to line up a base in the Tees Valley.
Making Teesside International Airport’s the UK’s first Net Zero Airport is also part of the region’s wider Net Zero Strategy with an ambition for Net Zero flights by 2035.
Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen said: “Here on Teesside, we are leading the way in sustainable aviation fuel and this announcement just goes to show it with 75 percent of this fund going to local projects.
“We are committed to making aviation sustainable to secure the future of Teesside Airport and by getting ahead of the curve we can make sure we are best placed to lead the transition to SAF.
“These fantastic projects will create local jobs for local people and make our airport a key player in the industry.
“Let there be no mistake about it – we get things done and we get there first.”
Willis Sustainable Fuels is one company developing plan for a multi-million-pound refinery at Dorman Point, on the Teesworks site.
It will use power-to-liquid technology to convert carbon dioxide and green hydrogen into sustainable aviation fuel (SAF), with its plant expected to be operational in 2026.
It was awarded £4,721,000 from the fund’s second round.
Welcoming the news, Austin C. Willis, CEO of Willis Lease Finance Corporation (WLFC), said: “We genuinely appreciate the UK government’s commitment to develop a robust UK SAF industry.
“We are honoured that WLFC’s pioneering Carbonshift PtL SAF project has been selected by the Department for Transport, reinforcing our potential to play a pivotal role in supporting the UK’s ambitious goal of supplying 10 percent SAF by 2030.”
He added: “We are strongly committed to meeting the growing demand for sustainable aviation solutions while fostering local partnerships and propelling a collective effort towards a more sustainable future for aviation on a global scale.”
Transport Secretary Mark Harper added: “The investment we’re announcing today demonstrates our confidence in the UK’s SAF industry – creating jobs, encouraging overseas investment and levelling up communities across the whole country.
“Thanks to this Government’s backing, the UK is quickly becoming a SAF superpower – ensuring people can continue to travel how they want, in a way that’s fit for the future.”
Abundia Biomass-to-Liquids (A-Jet UK) – Awarded £4,484,000
Alfanar Energy (Lighthouse Green Fuels) – Awarded £8,664,000
Arcadia e-Fuels (NABOO) – Awarded: £12,341,000
Nova Pangaea Technologies (Project Speedbird) – Awarded: £9,063,015
Willis Sustainable Fuels (Carbonshift PtL) – Awarded: £4,721,000
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