Oil and fuel company Neste has begun supplying sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) to Emirates at Amsterdam Schiphol Airport, adding to the airline’s network of SAF suppliers in Europe and the UAE. 

The contract will see 2 million gallons of blended SAF, consisting of 700,000 gallons of neat SAF, provided for Emirates flights through 2024. It is one of the largest SAF contracts by volume for the UAE flag carrier to date. 

Adel Al Redha, deputy president and COO of Emirates, said: “Strong partnerships like this, especially at major air transport hubs such as Amsterdam, lay the foundation for how we can work with partners and airports to increase access to and availability of SAF across our network.” 

The airline has been using SAF since its first flight using blended fuel in 2017, and currently has suppliers set up in Paris and Lyon in France, Oslo in Norway, and Dubai in the UAE. Neste is set to begin supplying SAF for Emirates at Singapore Changi Airport in the next few months. 

Neste’s MY SAF product is made of renewable waste and residue raw materials such as used cooking oil and animal fat waste. If used as a pure fuel it can reduce greenhouse gas emissions by up to 80%, meaning the reductions from blended SAF will likely be significantly lower depending on the blend ratio. 

The fuel has gained popularity in the aviation industry as a more sustainable alternative to traditional jet fuel thanks to its ability to “drop in” to most modern aircraft engines. Emirates tested 100% SAF on flights such as an A380 demonstration in Dubai last year

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However, the focus on SAF has also seen criticism from some areas of the industry due to the relatively low emissions reduction it brings, its higher price, and current limited availability.