Brussels Airlines takes off for Spain on its first SAF flight

Brussels Airlines Airbus A319 airplane at Brussels Airport (BRU) in Belgium.
Markus Mainka/Shutterstock

Brussels Airlines operated its first SAF flight from Brussels to Malaga, Spain on January 1, 2023, after the airline and Brussels Airport received their first batch of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF).  

The SAF was delivered to Brussels Airport through NATO’s Central Europe Pipeline System (CEPS), which is a petroleum pipeline network that extends for 5,279 Km across five NATO nations namely Belgium, France, Germany, Luxemburg and The Netherlands. 

Brussels Airlines purchased 2,000 barrels each with a capacity of 1,000 liters and a blend of 38% SAF. according to a statement released by Brussels Airlines.  

This supports the airline’s sustainability goals to halve its CO2 emissions by 2030 compared to its 2019 emissions and become carbon neutral by 2050.  

Commenting on the development, Brussels Airlines’ CEO Peter Gerber highlighted the airline’s plans to increase its use of alternatives to fossil fuels. 

“The fact that we can now transport the sustainable aviation fuel from the blending facility all the way to our aircraft at Brussels Airport in a fast and environmentally friendly way is an important step to increase the use of this type of fuel in the near future,” said Gerber. 

“Next to fleet renewal, sustainable aviation fuel is the most effective tool currently available to reduce emissions from air travel. Together with the Lufthansa Group, we have already invested in the production and use of SAF for several years,” added Gerber. 

The SAF was produced by Neste at its blending facilities in Ghent, Belgium. Brussels Airlines transported the fuel from Neste’s facilities to the fuel storage facility at Brussels Airport on January 1, 2023. 

“Having sustainable aviation fuels available at the airport has been a priority for us and we are delighted that, thanks to NATO’s support, we can already achieve this at such short notice,” said Arnaud Feist, CEO of Brussels Airport. 

Brussels Airport is the only Belgian airport fully supplied with kerosene via NATO’s CEPS pipeline. 

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