In an effort to create more consistency and clarity for consumers related to the climate impact of their air travel, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and Travalyst have agreed to align their efforts in this area.
Travalyst is a coalition of nine companies–Skyscanner, Google, Booking.com, Expedia Group, Tripadvisor, Amadeus, Travelport, Trip.com Group and Visa–founded by Prince Harry, the Duke of Sussex, in 2019.
- Related column: The catalyst for Travalyst? Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex
“This is the first time that airlines and the travel technology sector have come together in this way. As such it is a milestone moment in the decarbonization of the sector,” said Sally Davey, CEO of Travalyst.
“In the face of the climate emergency, travelers want and need clear and unequivocal information about their carbon footprint on which to base travel decisions. Today we are bringing some of the leading travel brands around the table with the world’s leading airline association, with the aim of easily providing consumers with the most accurate carbon calculations.”
The organizations said the collaboration will focus on both data and standard methodology for route-based passenger emission calculations, including a shared position on how to account for sustainable aviation fuel (SAF).
IATA estimates production of SAF will increase 200% this year compared to 2021, to at least 79 million gallons.
- Related: Sustainable aviation fuel output tripled in 2022 — but it’s still small
“There was at least triple the amount of SAF in the market in 2022 than in 2021. And airlines used every drop, even at very high prices! If more was available, it would have been purchased,” says Willie Walsh, director general at IATA.
“That makes it clear that it is a supply issue and that market forces alone are insufficient to solve it. Governments, who now share the same 2050 net zero goal, need to put in place comprehensive production incentives for SAF. It is what they did to successfully transition economies to renewable sources of electricity. And it is what aviation needs to decarbonize.”
IATA said that with supporting policies, the SAF industry is “on the verge of an exponential capacity and production ramp-up toward an identified tipping point of 30 billion liters by 2030.”
It said to date more than 450,000 commercial flights have been operated using SAF.
In related news, a Germany-based developer of batteries that can be used in electric planes has raised $63 million in Series A funding from several climate-tech investors.
Customcells said it will use the funding to advance electric flying.
“Energy storage is the critical technology for the further expansion of renewable energy and thus for the further decarbonization of the global economy,” said Daria Saharova, co-founder of World Fund, the lead investor.
“Customcells has the opportunity to enable the disruption of aviation and thus rapidly decarbonize the entire industry.”
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