Lufthansa and OMV Cooperate Over Sustainable Aviation Fuel

PeopleOther ♦ Published: September 13, 2022; 19:28 ♦ (Vindobona)

OMV, the international integrated oil, gas and chemical company headquartered in Vienna, and Lufthansa Group are expanding a partnership on sustainable aviation fuels. Germany's Lufthansa plans to stock up on sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) from OMV in the future.

OMV has already been supplying initial quantities of SAF to the Lufthansa Group airline Austrian Airlines at Vienna Airport since March 2022. / Picture: © OMV/Andreas Jakwerth - redaktionelle Verwendung honorarfrei

Both companies have signed a memorandum of understanding of more than 800,000 tons of SAF for the years 2023 to 2030, they said in their respective releases.

The two companies intend to expand their existing partnership and extend it to include new sites for SAF production and offtake as well as new technologies.

With the expansion of the cooperation, the Lufthansa Group is driving availability, the ramp-up of the market and the use of SAF as essential elements for a CO2-neutral future of aviation. The Lufthansa Group is continuously reviewing options for long-term purchase agreements and is already the largest buyer of SAF in Europe.

For OMV, the planned SAF supply partnership with the Lufthansa Group is a further step towards reducing the CO2 intensity of the product portfolio and providing solutions for the sustainable development of the aviation industry.

SAF is produced by OMV by co-processing sustainable and regional raw materials, specifically used cooking oil. Compared to conventional kerosene, sustainable aviation fuel contributes to a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions of more than 80% over the entire life cycle

Sustainable aviation fuel

SAF is the generic term for all aviation fuels that are produced without the use of fossil energy sources such as crude oil or natural gas. Various production processes exist and different feedstocks are available as energy sources.

The current generation of SAF, which saves 80 percent CO2 compared to conventional kerosene, is mainly produced from biogenic residues, such as used cooking oils. Before being transported to the airport, SAF is currently blended with fossil kerosene. However, CO2 is captured from the atmosphere for the production of SAFs, thus the climate impact decreases when considering the carbon cycle as a whole. The sustainability of SAFs used in commercial aviation is assessed by various institutions such as the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) at the international level or the EU. In perspective, SAF can enable nearly CO2-neutral aviation.

Synthetic kerosene or SAF causes much lower CO2 emissions but is still more expensive than climate-damaging fossil fuel. SAF is the most important lever for aviation to become climate-friendly and to make its contribution to the fight against global warming.