TRAN gives green light for sustainable aviation fuels

On 27 June 2023, a provisional deal on new sustainable aviation fuels rules setting the minimum share of greener jet fuels to be made available at EU airports was approved in TRAN Committee.

The Refuel EU aviation rules, part of Fit for 55 package, agreed by Council and Parliament negotiators, led by EP rapporteur José Ramón Bauzá Díaz (Renew, ES), in April 2023, seek to promote the uptake of sustainable aviation fuels in order to cut aviation sector emissions and ensure the EU becomes climate neutral by 2050.

MEPs secured an ambitious timeline of the provision of jet fuel mix, obliging EU airports and fuel suppliers to ensure that starting from 2025 at least 2% of aviation fuels will be green, with this share increasing every five years: 6% in 2030, 20% in 2035, 34% in 2040, 42% in 2045 and 70% in 2050. In addition, a specific proportion of the fuel mix (1.2% in 2030, 2% in 2032, 5% in 2035 and progressively reaching 35% in 2050) must comprise synthetic fuels like e-kerosene.

According to the deal, the term ‘sustainable aviation fuels’ will include synthetic fuels, certain biofuels produced from agricultural or forestry residues, algae, bio-waste, used cooking oil or certain animal fats, and recycled jet fuels produced from waste gases and waste plastic.

To further promote the decarbonising of the aviation sector and to inform the public, MEPs ensured that as of 2025 there will be an EU label for the environmental performance of flights. Airlines will be able to market their flights with a label indicating the expected carbon footprint per passenger and the expected CO2 efficiency per kilometre. It will allow passengers to compare the environmental performance of flights operated by different companies on the same route.

The deal on Refuel EU aviation rules was approved by Transport and Tourism Committee by 35 votes to five. It now needs to be approved by the full House, possibly during September plenary session in Strasbourg.

More details on the outcome of the negotiations between EP and Council is available here. The text of the agreement is available here.