Etihad Airways has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with UAE’s Abu Dhabi Waste Management Centre (Tadweer) to work together on a research project that will explore ways to convert municipal waste into jet fuel.

Etihad Airways and Tadweer will initially conduct a feasibility study on the development of a waste-to-fuel facility in Abu Dhabi.

If successful, the resulting jet fuel will be used in flights operated by Etihad Airways.

Etihad Aviation Group chief operating officer Mohammad Al Bulooki was quoted by Emirates News Agency as saying: “Waste-to-biofuel is a cutting-edge technology, one that Etihad Airways believes will have a profoundly positive impact on the aviation industry, while also providing waste management solutions and a cleaner environment.

“Waste-to-biofuel is a cutting-edge technology, one that Etihad Airways believes will have a profoundly positive impact on the aviation industry.”

“The adoption and upscaling of sustainable energy supplies is a crucial step towards reducing Etihad Airways’ dependency on fossil fuels, allowing the airline to grow sustainably and offset carbon emissions.”

Once the study is completed, Etihad Airways and Tadweer will consider establishing a long-term project with additional partners.

A joint work committee including representatives from Etihad Airways and Tadweer will look after the project and other carbon reduction opportunities.

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The production cost of waste-to-jet fuel could be 50% lower than the average international oil prices.

Industry estimates have suggested that long-term production of sustainable and renewable jet fuel could enable Etihad Airways to lower its carbon emissions by up to 90%.

Abu Dhabi currently produces around 700,000t of municipal waste annually.