British Airways has selected a site in Essex to build its ground-breaking Green Sky London environmental project to create biofuel for its aircraft

The airline and its partner Solena Fuels intends to use the site at Thames Enterprise Park in Thurrock to construct the world’s first facility for turning household waste into jet fuel. The Green Sky project featured in Buying Business Travel’s Hotlist 2014.

BA said it had chosen the Essex site due to its “excellent transport links and existing fuel storage facilities”. The plant is set to be completed in 2017 and will create up to 150 permanent jobs.

Willie Walsh, chief executive of BA’s parent company IAG, said: “We are always striving to reduce our impact on climate change and this first-of-its-kind project marks a significant step for the aviation industry.  

“The construction of the Green Sky London fuel facility at Thames Enterprise Park will lay the foundations for British Airways to reduce its carbon emissions significantly.  

“The sustainable jet fuel produced each year will be enough to power our flights from London City airport twice over with carbon savings the equivalent of taking 150,000 cars off the road.”

BA has promised to buy all jet fuel produced by the plant for the next 11 years which is estimated to be worth $550 million at today’s prices.

Robert Do, CEO of Solena Fuels, added:  “We are excited to help British Airways achieve its sustainability goals by providing an innovative solution to produce drop-in jet fuel.  

“We anticipate starting construction of the site in approximately 12 months after all the requisite permits and agreements have been obtained.”

Watch a video of Willie Walsh talking about the project:

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