IATA’s Energy Forum brought together key stakeholders from across the world to discuss the energy transition challenges facing the industry and propose achievable solutions.

There is no doubt that aviation’s future lies in the ability to fly sustainably. Even though aviation is an instrument of trade, prosperity, and peace on a global scale, it has committed to net zero CO2 emissions by 2050. It is the first industry to have a roadmap to achieve this aim.

Already, it is known that sustainable aviation fuels (SAF) will be vital. Though new propulsion systems, including electric and hydrogen, offer potentially significant reduction in CO2, the technology is still some way off.

Various panels and speakers at the Forum therefore confirmed that aviation must pursue innovation where it exists—and SAF are a proven and scalable way to get to reduce emissions

Every single drop of SAF produced last year was used by airlines around the world. The challenge now is to ramp up production and reduce prices enough to be competitive.

Enabling policies and investments to ensure reliability of supply will be critical. The truth is that there is a huge gap between where the industry wants to go and the reality it is facing. That is why a global level playing field on policies is so vital. In essence, a global industry requires a global solution. Cooperation at all levels  and from all corners of the globe will ensure adequate investments, stability of supply, and production improvements.

The task ahead is huge, and no airline, supplier or government can do it alone.

A report by Sebastian Mikosz, IATA’s SVP, Environment and Sustainability, can be found here.


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