Energy giant Shell has joined forces with a number of strategic investors, including All Nippon Airways, Suncor Energy, Mitsui and British Airways, to finance LanzaJet, the company commercializing a process to convert alcohol into jet fuel .
A spin-off of LanzaTech, one of the last surviving climate tech startups of the first cleantech boom that remains privately owned, LanzaJet takes a phased investment approach with its supporting companies, allowing them to invest additional capital as the company evolves towards higher production. facilities.
Terms of the initial investment, or LanzaJet’s valuation after engagement, were not disclosed.
LanzaJet says it can help the aviation industry achieve net zero emissions, which would go a long way in helping the world meet the emissions reduction targets set in the Paris Agreement.
“LanzaJet’s technology opens an exciting new avenue for producing SAFs using an AtJ process and will help meet the urgent need for SAF in the aviation industry. It shows that the industry can move faster and deliver more when we all work together, ”said Anna Mascolo, President of Shell Aviation, in a statement. “Provided industry, government and society work together on appropriate policy and regulatory mechanisms to stimulate both supply and demand, aviation can achieve net zero carbon emissions. The strategic fit with LanzaJet is exciting. “
LanzaJet is currently building an alcohol jet fuel facility in Soperton, Georgia. When completed, it would be the first commercial scale sustainable synthetic jet fuel plant with a capacity of 10 million gallons per year.
The fuel is made using ethanol inputs – something Shell is very familiar with. It’s also something the oil giant has in stock. Through the Raízen joint venture in Brazil, Shell has been producing bioethanol for over ten years.
The company expects its sustainable fuel to be blended with conventional fossil jet fuel to power planes in a lower carbon intensity manner. About 90% of the company’s production will be aviation fuel, while the remaining 10% will be renewable diesel, the company said.
LanzaJet’s SAF is approved for blending up to 50% with fossil jet fuel, the maximum allowed by ASTM, and is an alternative fuel that does not require modifications to engines, aircraft and infrastructure. In addition, LanzaJet’s SAF provides over 70% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions on a lifecycle basis, compared to conventional fossil jet fuel. The versatility of ethanol and the focus on low carbon, waste-based and non-food / non-food sources, as well as the global availability of ethanol, make LanzaJet technology a relevant and effective solution. sustainable for SAF.