Virgin Atlantic tests Swedish ‘green’ fuel

Virgin Atlantic airlines has initiated a cooperation with technology company Swedish Biofuels to start using more environmentally friendly aviation fuel.

Virgin Atlantic tests Swedish 'green' fuel

Included in the cooperation is also airplane constructor Boeing and Lanza Tech, according to a report by news agency TT.

“It is very exciting,” said CEO of Swedish Biofuels and adjunct professor at Royal Institute of Technology (KTH), Angelica Hull.

“Hopefully this will lead to a certification of our fuels and a commercialization of our fuel technology.”

Hopes are to get the fuel approved for commercial flights within three years, which could lead to a halving in carbon dioxide emissions compared to conventional fuel, according to the companies involved.

The fuel originates from ethanol which Lanza Tech extract and produce from gases that arise as a byproduct from steel manufacturing. The gas, which had otherwise been released into the atmosphere, will then be transformed into aviation fuel using Swedish Biofuel’s technology.

At the moment Hull doesn’t want to get into details about what the cooperation is worth to her company, but she admits that they would’ve been unable to conduct the test flights alone, which will now be carried out by Boeing and Virgin Atlantic.

“We’re in the middle of a process right now,” Hull said.

“The fact that this airline is considering using this fuel for their flights in the future is an important step forward.”

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Reinfeldt and Pinera sign ‘green tech’ agreements

Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt and Chilean President Sebastian Pinera signed cooperation agreements on mining, forestry and “green technologies” on Thursday.

Reinfeldt and Pinera sign ‘green tech’ agreements

“A country that will invest $50 billion during this decade in mining has to make an effort because mining is sustainable,” Pinera said.

Chile relies heavily on exports of its natural resources. Copper alone provides one-third of government revenue, according to US estimates. Lithium, iron, wood and fruits are among Chile’s exports.

Mining and forestry, said Pinera, “are very important to both nations.” The “green technologies” agreement focuses on urban development that protects the environment.

Reinfeldt, concluding a four-day official trip to Brazil and Chile, spoke earlier Thursday at an energy seminar before meeting Pinera at the presidential palace.

Earlier in the trip, Reinfeldt discussed ethanol production, environmental concerns and technological cooperation with Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff.

On Wednesday, Reinfeldt told Brazilian business leaders that there should be a global “green economy” with sustainable growth. He said it would be a huge challenge but that “there is no alternative.”

During his trip to South America, Reinfeldt has expressed hope that these ideas will gain more widespread support at the “Rio+20” UN Conference on Sustainable Development next year.

“We need a better common understanding of green economy, and Rio+20 could get us closer to such an understanding,” Reinfeldt said Tuesday.