Manila, Philippines – Philippine Airlines (PAL) and Korean Air (KAL), the flag carriers of the Philippines and South Korea, are actively exploring the use of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) to reduce their carbon footprint and contribute positively to the environment. This initiative is part of the airlines' broader commitment to sustainability and reducing the impact of air travel on climate change.
According to Philippines News Agency, PAL President Stanley Ng discussed the integration of SAF in flight operations with business delegates at the recent APEC Summit in San Francisco, California. Villaluna relayed that Ng's plan involves sourcing SAF from cost-efficient suppliers, with the goal of integrating it into PAL's operations by 2030. Ng also emphasized PAL's ongoing collaborations with various stakeholders to produce more SAF, making it more affordable and accessible for airlines.
In a separate development, Korean Air announced its partnership with logistics firm LX Pantos to expand the use of SAF in its cargo flights. A memorandum of understanding was signed at KAL's headquarters, focusing on reducing greenhouse gas emissions and increasing awareness of SAF usage in Korea. Jaedong Eum, KAL's head of Cargo Business Division, expressed optimism about cooperating to expedite the commercialization of SAF in the aviation industry. KAL has been working on establishing infrastructure for SAF usage in domestic aviation, including conducting six test flights from September to November to inform the Korean government on SAF blending ratios and quality standards.
In the Philippines, low-cost carrier Cebu Pacific (CEB) has been a pioneer in using SAF. In 2022, CEB conducted its first SAF-powered flight from Singapore to Manila, utilizing a 35 percent blended SAF. CEB's website states that SAF is made from renewable waste and raw materials like used cooking oil and animal fat waste. The use of SAF can result in up to an 80 percent reduction in carbon emissions over the fuel's life cycle.