KLIA, Sepang: In conjunction with World Environment Day, Malaysia Airlines, the national carrier of Malaysia, today operated its first passenger flight using Neste MY Sustainable Aviation FuelTM (SAF) on flight MH603 from Kuala Lumpur (KUL) to Singapore (SIN), which was refuelled at Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA).
The historic flight was operated with a Boeing 737-800 aircraft fuelled by a blend of conventional jet fuel and Neste's SAF, which is produced from 100% renewable waste and residue raw materials, such as animal fat waste that was used for the SAF fuelling on this flight.
Produced by Neste, the world's largest SAF producer, the fuel was supplied through a supply deal with PETCO Trading (UK) Ltd, which is PETRONAS' marketing and trading arm based in Europe, while product handling and refuelling was carried out by PETRONAS Dagangan Berhad (PDB) at KLIA. Following today's milestone, the long-term supply of SAF will be made available at KLIA from hereon for potential airline customers, as well as future flights operated by sister airlines under Malaysia Aviation Group (MAG), including Firefly.
The send-off event in KLIA today follows the historic SAF-fuelled commercial cargo flight MH7979 from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur in December last year, proving the feasibility of SAF as a cleaner and more viable fuel option.
Philip See, Group Chief Sustainability Officer of MAG, said, 'MAG aims to be a pioneer in using SAF for flights in Malaysia as part of our commitment to achieving socio-economic development and reaching net zero carbon emissions by 2050. We have taken proactive measures in minimising our carbon footprint from the ground up through measures taken within our operations, including fuel efficiency programmes such as SAF.
With the commencement of our first passenger flight using SAF, we encourage passengers to join us on this journey as we take the necessary steps to minimise our environmental impacts and plan for more flights powered by SAF; for the betterment of the industry, nation, and future of our planet. Moving forward, we will look to make SAF the cleaner and more viable energy option for our regular flights by 2025.'
To further drive the advocacy, promotion and adoption of SAF in line with the Twelfth Malaysia Plan and commitment toward a lower carbon future, a special taskforce has been formed by the National Aerospace Industry Coordinating Office (NAICO) and led by Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI). Other members include the relevant Ministries and industry players including MAG and PETRONAS.
Both MAG and PDB entered a partnership in 2021 to jointly explore potential collaborative opportunities that advance sustainability, including the supply and adoption of SAF at KLIA. They also aim to strengthen awareness of aviation sustainability through a united communication and advocacy strategy around carbon emission reduction.
In anticipation of the Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA) mandatory phase in 2027, PETRONAS is evaluating planned developments of greenfield and brownfield biorefineries as well as co-processing at existing PETRONAS facilities. With this strategic growth, PETRONAS will be well positioned to supply SAF domestically and internationally, with additional operational flexibility to also produce hydrogenated vegetable oil (HVO) or Renewable Diesel.
Azrul Osman Rani, PDB's Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer said, 'In line with PETRONAS' commitment towards achieving Net Zero Carbon Emissions by 2050, exploring the supply of SAF at KLIA is a natural progression for us with aviation fuel being one of our key products. With two proven flights, PDB has demonstrated its capabilities and infrastructure readiness in supplying SAF in KLIA from now onwards to support the aviation industry's sustainability agenda. Coupled with commitment from the special taskforce, we are confident that we will be able to jointly accelerate the transformation of the Malaysian aviation industry into a sustainable one.'
Neste is committed to support aviation reach its ambitious emission reduction goals and is currently expanding its global SAF production capacity to 1.5 million tonnes by the end of 2023. In neat form, Neste MY Sustainable Aviation Fuel reduces greenhouse gas emissions by up to 80%* over the life cycle, compared to fossil jet fuel. Neste-produced SAF is made from 100% renewable and sustainably sourced waste and residue raw materials.
'This collaboration with PETRONAS enables our first supply of Neste MY SAF to Malaysia,' said Sami Jauhiainen, Vice President APAC, Renewable Aviation at Neste, 'I am excited to see how countries and airlines in the Asia-Pacific region are setting ambitious targets to decarbonize aviation and increasingly many airlines are taking SAF into use to reduce their emissions and enable their travellers to fly more sustainably. Neste is committed to play its part with the ongoing expansion of our global production capacity to 1.5 million tons of SAF by end of 2023, ready to support the Asia-Pacific and global aviation markets.'
*) Calculated with established life cycle assessment (LCA) methodologies, such as CORSIA methodology.