Shell Aviation: “SAF will be a critical lever”

To achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, aviation will need to use all available solutions and measures. “No single solution will be enough on its own”, said Ashleigh McDougall, general manager for Shell Aviation’s business for Europe & Africa in an interview with SimpleFlying. However, to reach the 2050 goals, SAF will be a critical lever, McDougal insists.

The Shell Aviation GM believes that aviation will need ‘all hands on deck’ to reach the 2050 goals. In her opinion, the measures that will need to be taken, include: “Reducing fuel consumption through operational efficiencies, sustainable aviation fuel (SAF), electric and hydrogen-powered aircraft, carbon credits and demand transformation.” To get anywhere near reaching the goal, utilizing SAF is essential, McDougall stated.

In her opinion, delivering these goals will require exponential growth in SAF production and use. “There are still challenges, including technological readiness and the availability of feedstock, laddering up to the main challenge - high price point. To bring down the high price point, more supply is needed, as well as new production technologies. However, scaling supply is dependent on having consistent and strong demand for the long-term and not just the short-term.”

As to Shell Aviation’s own role, she says: “We are building, what would be one of Europe’s largest biofuels facilities at our Shell Energy and Chemicals Park Rotterdam. We aim to produce SAF and renewable diesel from 2025, so it will play an important role in helping Shell to continue to supply SAF and meet growing demand.”