Government announces plan to ensure greener flights don’t mean higher fares

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By Linsey McNeill
Home » Government announces plan to ensure greener flights don’t mean higher fares

The Government is planning for 10% of fuel in all flights from the UK to come from sustainable sources by 2030, but it says this won’t mean passengers paying more.

Airlines have warned that sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) is more expensive than kerosine, but the Government says it will prevent ‘major’ hikes.

Its new SAF mandate, which will come into force next January if approved by Parliament, sets a target for 1.2 million tons of SAF to be supplied to the UK airline industry every year.

The Department for Transport (DfT) said: “While we recognise SAF may be more expensive than traditional jet fuel in the immediate term, we’re ensuring decarbonisation doesn’t come at the expense of consumers. 

“This plan is part of our approach to ensure that the rationing of flights through ‘demand management’ is ruled out.”

It said the plan includes a review mechanism to help manage prices and minimise the impact on ticket fares for passengers. 

The DfT added: “The Government also has the power to change key limits within the mandate to block higher price rises in the case of SAF shortages – keeping the impact on consumers to a minimum. 

“Providing sufficient SAF is available, any increases in air fares as a result of SAF will fall well within the range of usual fluctuations in prices we see every year and the Government have plans in place to prevent any major hikes.

“This is part of the Government’s plan to deliver on our ambitious net zero commitments while ensuring we take a pragmatic and proportionate approach which minimises unnecessary burdens on the public.”

Transport Secretary Mark Harper added: “Sustainable aviation fuel protects the future of UK aviation, the thousands of British jobs that depend on it, and the holidays and business travel flights that we all rely on.

“As part of our plan to grow the economy, the measures announced today will give both UK aviation and the UK SAF industry the certainty they need to keep creating skilled British jobs while giving passengers the freedom to continue travelling by air in a way that’s fit for the future.”

SAF produces up to 70% less carbon emissions than traditional fossil fuels used in most commercial flights. It is made from waste materials or by-products – like household waste, industrial gases or used cooking oil.

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