Microsoft, Alaska Airlines, and carbon transformation company Twelve announced a new collaboration, aimed at advancing the production and use of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) derived from captured CO2.

Twelve produces chemicals, materials, and fuels from carbon, instead of fossil fuels through a carbon transformation technology that converts captured CO2 into products with water and renewable energy as inputs and producing only water and oxygen outputs. Earlier this month, the company raised $130 million to advance its technology, with Microsoft Climate Innovation Fund as one of the investors.

Nicholas Flanders, Co-Founder, and CEO of Twelve, said:

“By producing our drop-in E-Jet fuel from captured CO2, we can rapidly and efficiently close the carbon cycle and allow businesses to sustainably use emissions to power their own business travel. Partnering with progress-minded brands like Alaska Airlines and Microsoft adds thrust as we work towards delivering industrial-scale volumes of E-Jet.”

Air transport has come under increasing scrutiny in recent years as a significant contributor to GHG emissions, accounting for an estimated 2% of global GHG emissions. SAF is seen by market participants as one of the key tools for the industry to address its climate impact, as it generates significantly lower lifecycle carbon emissions relative to conventional jet fuel. SAF is generally produced from sustainable resources, like waste oils and agricultural residues, or even from carbon captured from the air, rather than from fossil fuels.

Under the new collaboration, the three companies will aim to accelerate the production and use of Twelve’s low carbon jet fuel, E-Jet, which is made by a power-to-liquids process using the company’s carbon transformation technology. In addition, they will also work toward a demonstration flight using E-Jet, and to supply the fuel to address some of Microsoft’s business travel on Alaska.

 Elizabeth Willmott, Carbon Program Director at Microsoft, said:

“Building on our Climate Innovation Fund investment in Twelve and relationship with Alaska Airlines, this collaboration provides an opportunity to accelerate decarbonization in the aviation industry by exploring how to use low carbon fuels produced by renewable electricity, like Twelve’s E-Jet.”

The collaboration follows the launch of Microsoft and Alaska Airline’s partnership in October 2020, aimed at reducing the environmental impact of Microsoft employees’ business air travel through the use of SAF.

Diana Birkett Rakow, Senior Vice President of Public Affairs and Sustainability at Alaska Airlines, said:

“We are committed to making SAF more widely available, at an affordable price, helping bring new alternatives to market, and using these fuels in our operation – a path that requires public policy action and private partnerships like this one. We’re excited to work with Twelve and Microsoft to advance Twelve’s E-Jet fuel, turning captured CO2 and renewable energy into fuel for our airplanes.”

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