Petronor produces biofuel from waste for aviation for the first time in Spain

Petronor has successfully manufactured the first batch of biojet from waste in the Spanish market. This is an important milestone in the production of low-carbon fuels and represents an evolution in the decarbonisation of aviation fuels, a segment where electrification is not currently feasible.

The batch consists of 5,300 tonnes of fuel and meets strict product quality requirements and sustainability criteria in the production, logistics and marketing chain. The use of this fuel will prevent the emission of 300 tonnes of CO2, the equivalent of 40 flights between Madrid and Bilbao.

This is the third batch of biojet to be manufactured in Spain by Repsol, following the production of two batches at the Puertollano and Tarragona refineries in mid-2020 and early 2021 respectively, where biomass was used as raw material.

In the case of the batch manufactured at Petronor, waste was used as raw material, thus integrating the principles of the circular economy into the process. This improves the management of waste by transforming it into high-added-value products such as fuels with a low carbon footprint.

The aviation sector is moving decisively towards decarbonisation through the use of biofuels. The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has set itself the target of zero carbon emissions growth from 2020. For this purpose, it is undertaking a number of initiatives, amongst which the use of different sustainable fuels, such as biofuels and advanced biofuels produced from waste, stand out in terms of their great contribution to reducing CO2 emissions.

The Spanish Integrated National Energy and Climate Plan acknowledges that biofuels currently represent the most widely available and implemented renewable technology in transport, especially in sectors such as heavy vehicles and aviation, where there are still obstacles to electrification. Moreover, the Climate Change and Energy Transition Act, passed last May, contains an article devoted to sustainable alternative fuels in transport, with special emphasis on advanced biofuels and other fuels of non-biological origin. EU institutions have also established different measures to promote the use of biojet in the aeronautical sector.

The promotion of this type of fuel comes on top of projects already undertaken by Repsol in the areas of energy efficiency, low-emission electricity generation, renewable hydrogen, the circular economy, synthetic fuels and CO2 sequestration, use and storage. The initiative is amongst Repsol’s main strategic pillars for the purpose of achieving the goal of being a zero net emissions company by 2050.