German flag carrier Lufthansa informed that the airline company is all set to operate its first-ever 100% carbon-neutral cargo flight on Sunday.
The flight will be performed by a Boeing 777F aircraft and will travel to Shanghai and back, from the airline’s main Frankfurt hub using sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) on both legs, the airlines said.
“SAF refers to sustainable, synthetic kerosene. It is currently produced mainly from biomass, such as sustainable or recyclable vegetable and cooking oils. In future, non-plant-based renewable fuels will also be available,” Lufthansa explained in a statement.
Lufthansa further said, “The best-known production process for this is the so-called power-to-liquid concept (PtL), based on renewable electricity, water and CO2. By using SAF, the fossil CO2 emissions from a flight with conventional kerosene are completely avoided. During combustion in the engine, only CO2 is released that was previously removed from the atmosphere, for example during plant growth. SAF is thus the first real alternative to fossil aviation fuel and the key to climate-friendly, CO2-neutral air traffic.”
On Sunday, Lufthansa’s carbon-neutral cargo flight, LH8406 will depart from Frankfurt at 0810 hours local time, flying non-stop to Shanghai, where it is expected to land at 01:55. After two and a half hours, the flight will continue onto Seoul before returning to Frankfurt an hour later.
The flight which will be operated in partnership with DB Schenker will carry goods for Siemens Healthineers, among other companies.
The flight will stand out from the airline’s other flights, as it will be the first carbon-neutral freight flight operated by the airline. The airline plans to use the flight to highlight the need to improve the production and infrastructure needed by Sustainable Aviation Fuels.
Lufthansa Cargo will regularly operate carbon neutral flights from the summer 2021 flight schedule.
Before the pandemic hit the world, sustainability was one of the top priorities of the airline company. In light of this, Lufthansa also planned on flying carbon-neutral in early 2020. However, it had to put breaks on its execution as the pandemic created havoc in the aviation industry. Despite the setbacks, Lufthansa did not throw the idea to fly sustainably in the backburner and are still making efforts to pursue the endeavour in the new normal.