Brussels Airlines has received its first delivery of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) via the Central Europe Pipeline System (CEPS).

The airline, which belongs to the Lufthansa Group, has purchased 2,000 barrels of 1,000 litres each from Finnish-based company Neste, with a blend of 38 per cent SAF.

The SAF was transported from Neste’s blending facilities in Ghent via the CEPS pipeline to the fuel storage facility at Brussels airport just after midnight on January 1.

This allowed the carrier to operate its first SAF flight from Brussels to Malaga on January 1.

What is Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF)?

Brussels airport is the only Belgian airport fully connected to the CEPS pipeline network, which is the largest of the NATO pipeline systems and extends through Belgium, France, Germany, Luxembourg and The Netherlands.

Brussels airport will now receive not only kerosene but also SAF via this pipeline.

Peter Gerber, CEO of Brussels Airlines, commented:

“To achieve our climate goals, we will have to drastically increase the use of alternatives to fossil fuels in the coming years. 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. 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.”

Brussels airport is aiming to achieve 5 per cent SAF by 2026 as part of its European Stargate programme. This is four years ahead of the European Commission (ReFuelEU) target.

Jonathan Wood, Vice President Europe, Renewable Aviation at Neste, added:

“Following permission by NATO to transport SAF on the CEPS pipeline system, we are proud to be the first to deliver SAF into the pipeline to Brussels airport. We look forward to using the largest pipeline system in Europe to supply other airports in the near future. Pipelines are the most efficient way to supply as Neste is scaling up SAF production capacity to 1.5 million tons annually in 2023.”