Microsoft is investing $ 50 million in LanzaJet alcohol-to-jet fuel biorefinery

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According to LanzaJet, Microsoft is investing $ 50 million (roughly Rs 370 billion) in a LanzaJet facility in Georgia that will make kerosene from ethanol next year.

The aviation industry is considered one of the most difficult to decarbonise. Renewable aviation fuel accounted for less than 0.1 percent of current global aviation fuel needs of approximately 330 million tons in 2019, investment bank Jefferies said last year. Governments and investors are trying to incentivize the production of less CO2-emitting kerosene.

Chicago-based LanzaJet announced that on-site engineering at its Freedom Pines biorefinery is nearly complete and plans to begin producing 10 million gallons of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) and renewable diesel per year from sustainable ethanol, including from waste-based raw materials, in 2023.

Oil companies, airlines and other petroleum trading companies such as Suncor Energy, British Airways and Shell also fund the company.

The White House said last year that it aims to cut aviation emissions by 20 percent by 2030 as airlines are pressured by environmental groups to reduce their carbon footprint.

The Biden administration has announced tax credits for the production of sustainable jet fuel as part of its Build Back Better legislation, which is currently stalling in Congress.

The European Union has set itself the goal of increasing the proportion of SAF mixed with petroleum jet fuel to 63 percent by 2050.

Microsoft launched the Climate Innovation Fund in 2020 to invest $ 1 billion (about Rs.7,400 billion) over the next four years to accelerate the development of carbon removal technologies.

© Thomson Reuters 2022

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