The team at Tomorrow's Air is always busy tracking the latest trends and developments from the dynamic sectors of carbon dioxide removal and sustainable aviation fuel. Through our technical supply partners and through the conferences, panel discussions, newsletters and research reports we monitor, Tomorrow's Air keeps abreast of what's happening and offers a monthly digest in our Airrow Bulletin. Here are the highlights from our January, 2024 edition.
- Carbon Removal Progress 2023: The number of carbon removal credits sold was up 650% in 2023. According to CDR.fyi, there were 6.5 times more removals sold in 2023 (5.2 million tonnes) than in 2022 (800,000 tonnes). This is an exciting and encouraging trend! Of course we still have a steep mountain to climb: by 2030 McKinsey estimates we will need three to ten times more than the volumes currently estimated to be available by that date with investment of between half a trillion to two trillion U.S. dollars.
- Sustainable Aviation Fuel Progress 2023: SAF production also expanded in 2023, doubling from 300 million liters in 2022 more than 600 million liters by the end of 2023. According to the International Air Transport Association, SAF production is expected to triple in 2024 to nearly 1.9 billion liters. This amount would account for just a little over half a percent of aviation's fuel need and only six percent of renewable fuel capacity. IATA continues to call for governments to prioritize policies to incentivize the scaling-up of SAF production and to diversify feedstocks with those available locally.
- U.S. Sustainable Aviation Fuel Incentive: The U.S. government released details on a tax credit for producers of sustainable aviation fuel as part of the Inflation Reduction Act. According to the new guidance, producers of SAF are eligible for a $.01 to $1.25 credit-per-gallon that decreases greenhouse gas emissions emissions by fifty percent. “Sustainable aviation fuel is a critical tool for tackling the climate crisis,” said John Podesta, Senior Advisor to the President for Clean Energy Innovation and Implementation.
- Carbon Removal Standards Push: Isometric, a carbon removal registry, released two new standards in December: one for direct air capture and another for bio-oil geologic storage. Isometric is promoting a strict set of rules for removing carbon and is not acknowledging avoidance credits because they “do not actually result in a net reduction of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere,” and will not permit carbon credits to be issued for projects that may only temporarily store carbon dioxide, “which is an is which is an issue with many tree-planting programmes, given environmental risks such as wildfires.”
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