The 2023 Dubai Airshow will have a special focus on sustainability in the aviation industry, say organisers.
As the aerospace and defence industries continue on their pathways to net zero, this year’s Dubai Airshow will highlight a move towards a sustainable future.
The industries have taken bold steps towards decarbonisation, with innovation accelerating at an exponential rate.
Dubai Airshow 2023
As Dubai Airshow leads up to the United Nation’s annual global climate change conference, COP28, which is also taking place in Dubai towards the end of the year, industry stakeholders will take the opportunity to showcase their latest solutions towards net zero emissions, discuss collaborations and gain new insights.
The aviation industry contributes approximately two to three per cent of all global CO2 emissions, but with a constant increase in passenger demand, this could rise to 25 per cent to 30 per cent by 2050 if no actions are taken, according to a new report by Frost & Sullivan.
Additionally, global production capacity for Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) needs to exceed 30bn litres by 2030 and 450bn litres by 2050 for airlines to be able to achieve net zero targets.
In 2020, SAF production was just 450m litres, according to IATA, which is less than 0.05 per cent of the global demand of jet fuel.
The flight path is plotted for the Dubai Airshow Conferences ⚡ Check out our website for a full rundown of the 13 conference track agendas: https://t.co/cQ8t2KEpks— Dubai Airshow (@DubaiAirshow) August 17, 2023
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However, several initiatives are already underway in the Middle East region.
Recently, Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company (Masdar) signed an agreement with Airbus, to support the development and growth of the global SAF market.
The agreement will also see the entities collaborate on Green Hydrogen, and Direct Air Capture technologies.
Meanwhile, Qatar Airways signed a deal with Shell to source 3,000 metric tonnes of neat SAF at Amsterdam Schiphol airport, making it the first carrier in the Middle East and Africa to procure a large SAF amount in Europe, beyond government SAF mandates.
Globally, Shell Aviation has signed several other agreements to provide airlines including JetBlue and Japan Airlines (JAL) with SAF, and Air bp, the specialised aviation division of multinational oil and gas company BP, has announced the first sale of SAF from its Castellon refinery in Spain, marking another important milestone at it works towards making SAF more available.
Earlier this year, Emirates successfully completed a demonstration flight powered by 100 per cent SAF on a Boeing 777-300ER, as part of its plans to help the global aviation industry meet carbon emission targets.
The airline has also earmarked $200m to fund R&D on advanced fuel technologies that can reduce commercial aviation’s environmental impact.
Exhibitors at the Airshow are set to showcase their latest technologies and innovations that will help advance the industry towards achieving global net zero emissions targets.
Mikail Houari, President, Africa and Middle East at Airbus, commented: “At Airbus, we continue to demonstrate our unwavering commitment to leading the decarbonisation journey in the aerospace industry through our pioneering role in developing disruptive technologies.
“Whether this is through hydrogen-powered commercial aircraft or other sustainable solutions when it comes to engines and fuels, our goals are a testament to the potential for revolutionising the way we fly.
“We are relentlessly pursuing ambitions of building a more sustainable future for aviation as we seek to make our commercial fleet capable of flying with 100 per cent SAF by 2030.”
Separately, Honeywell has launched a new technology called UOP eFining™ that produces lower-carbon aviation fuel from green hydrogen and carbon dioxide captured from industry.
Mohammed Mohaisen, president and CEO, Honeywell Middle East and North Africa, said: “Sustainable Aviation Fuel represents a ready now opportunity to drive the sustainable growth of the aviation industry, yet it is still barely tapped into.