US carrier Southwest Airlines has signed memoranda of understanding (MoUs) with energy companies Marathon Petroleum Corporation (MPC) and Phillips 66 to enhance its commitment towards sustainability in fuel.

The partnership will focus on several initiatives, including the use of commercialised sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) in Southwest’s operations.

Some of the initiatives that the collaboration may concentrate on are to promote SAF policies with governmental agencies, research and development, and to raise public awareness of SAF’s benefits.

Southwest may purchase SAF from MPC’s planned Martinez Renewable Fuels facility and from Phillips 66’s Rodeo Renewed facility.

MPC and Phillips 66 jointly estimate these facilities to produce at least 300 million gallons of SAF by 2025.

The fuel could be used in the San Francisco Bay Area and across its operation in California.

Southwest supply chain management & environmental sustainability vice-president Stacy Malphurs said: “Fuel is the primary source of greenhouse gas emissions in the aviation industry and Southwest continually seeks an innovative approach to reduce them.

“Our plans include the integration of SAF, a lower carbon alternative on a lifecycle basis to conventional jet fuel, in our operations, and we look forward to opportunities with MPC and Phillips 66 to help make that happen.

“Working with these valued partners, alongside other organisations, is intended to help scale-up the SAF industry, bringing SAF to market at competitive prices and helping Southwest meet its carbon-reduction goals.”

Southwest is a member of US airlines trade organisation Airlines for America, which commits to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050.