Japanese flag carrier Japan Airlines (JAL) has signed an agreement with Tokyo-based firm Itochu for the delivery of sustainable aviation fuel produced by Finnish renewable fuel producer Neste.

Under the agreement, JAL will receive the delivery of Neste MY SAF for its ‘sustainable charter flight’ to be operated by JAL on the Tokyo (Haneda)-Okinawa (Naha) route from 18 November.

The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) General Assembly aims to attain net-zero CO₂ emissions from aircraft by 2050.

In addition, the aviation sector will be required to offset 15% of its emissions from 2019 levels.

In a statement, Itochu said: “The trend of decarbonisation in the airline industry is expected to further accelerate, and it is expected that the volume of SAF distribution will increase in Japan in the future as well.

“The commencement of SAF supply to JAL, who is one of the leading Japanese airline companies with a broad flight service network, is believed to make a significant contribution to achieving the goal of the Civil Aviation Bureau of the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism to replace 10% of all aviation fuels with SAF by 2030.”

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Both Itochu and JAL reached a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to discuss SAF supply in FY2023.

In February, Neste partnered with Itochu to expand the availability of SAF in Japan.

Itochu will be a branded distributor of Neste MY Sustainable Aviation Fuel in the country under this partnership.