Green diesel

Green Diesel

In early 2014, Boeing announced that it had identified a new source of biofuel for jets: “green diesel,” a renewable diesel fuel that today is used for truck transport. The company is working with the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration and other stakeholders to gain approval for aircraft to fly on green diesel, further reducing the aviation industry's carbon emissions.

Boeing researchers performed analysis that found green diesel, which is made from oils and fats, to be chemically similar to today's aviation biofuel. If approved, the fuel could be blended directly with traditional jet fuel. This would be a major breakthrough in the availability of competitively priced, sustainable aviation fuel.

Significant green diesel production capacity already exists in the United States, Europe and Singapore that could supply as much as 1 percent — about 600 million gallons (2,271.25 million liters) — of global commercial jet fuel demand. The wholesale cost of green diesel — about $3 a gallon with U.S. government incentives — is competitive with petroleum jet fuel. Green diesel, also called "renewable diesel," can be used in any diesel engine, which means that, if approved for use in aviation, it could be used extensively by airlines, cargo operations or government agencies with ground, sea and air operations.

Boeing, the FAA, engine manufacturers, green diesel producers and others are now compiling a detailed research report that will be submitted to key stakeholders in the fuel approvals process. (Please note that green diesel is chemically different and a different product than the fuel known as "biodiesel.")