Singapore Airlines Makes History

In an attempt to help reduce international aviation emissions Singapore Airlines has launched the world’s first “green package” flights powered in part by sustainable biofuel produced from used cooking oil.

The biofuel will be combined with the usual jet fuel in a series of 12 flights over the next three months on the Airbus A350-900, which the airline company hails as its “most fuel-efficient aircraft”, it said in a press release Wednesday.

The 12 biofuel flights will be on the airline’s nonstop Singapore-San Francisco route.

The first flight, SQ31, arrived in Singapore from San Francisco on May 2nd with 206 passengers on board after a 17-hour flight.

The airline’s chief executive officer hopes the biofuel-powered flights, together with fuel-efficient aircraft and optimised flight operations will improve the company’s commitment to reduce carbon emissions.

“We now want to push ourselves further and are embarking on this initiative to help promote the use of sustainable biofuel in an operationally and commercially viable manner,” said Singapore Airlines chief executive officer Goh Choon Phong.

The green package is in collaboration with the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore, which will offer optimised flight operations such as rerouting a flight’s lateral profile based on updated weather forecasts to save fuel.

Singapore Airlines has ordered 67 A350-900s with seven having ultra-long range capability for flights of up to 19 hours. Singapore Airlines has a long relationship with Airbus, having introduced the cornerstone A300 into the carrier’s service in February 1981; followed in November 1984 by the shorter-fuselage, longer-range A310-200 version. In February 2004, Singapore Airlines inaugurated its first A340-500 service by setting a non-stop commercial flight record from Singapore to Los Angeles, subsequently bettering this record in June 2004 with non-stop Singapore-Newark flights.

The carrier marked another airline industry milestone in October 2007 by inaugurating the world’s first A380 commercial flights, and expanded its Airbus fleet in January 2009 with the A330-300’s introduction.

Today, Singapore Airlines has all members of Airbus’ in-production widebody jetliner family in its inventory: the A330, A350 XWB and A380.

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