Airbus begins 18-month test of marine biofuel on vessels transporting A320 airplane components
In line with the ambition to reduce its carbon emissions, Airbus is introducing marine biofuel on one of the vessels it uses for transportation by sea.
A test campaign has been launched on the route Saint-Nazaire-Tunis-Naples at the end of December, which will run for 18 months.
In order to reduce the impact of its industrial activities on the environment, Airbus is continuously introducing alternative-energy solutions across the different transportation methods it uses: air, road and maritime.
In 2019, Airbus introduced sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) for its Beluga operations and initiated the use of biogas trucks in 2021 to transport aircraft sections and major components across its production sites in Europe.
In addition, in December, Airbus launched its first test campaign to explore the use of marine biofuel for its fleet of vessels over the course of 18 months.
Provided by Neste and produced in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, the marine biofuel is made of hydrotreated vegetable oil produced from used cooking oil, which contains no fossil fuels or additives.
The fuel will be used for the first time on the Airbus vessel Ciudad de Cadiz on the route Saint-Nazaire-Tunis-Naples-Saint-Nazaire operated by Louis Dreyfus Armateurs and carrying major components for the A320 family between its production sites.
During the 18-month test campaign, around a third of the total fuel—approximately 330 tons—is expected to be renewable, which will reduce CO2 emissions by up to 20 percent per trip compared to fossil fuel.
In one year, on this route only, Airbus aims to save around 6,000 tons of CO2.
This test campaign will enable Airbus and its partners to evaluate the performance of the renewable fuel, and the vessel’s engine, and confirm by how much it has been able to reduce its CO2 emissions.