Australia, New Zealand airlines consider biofuel

Wellington  Airlines in New Zealand and Australia on Monday launched a bid to start a market in biofuel that is used in aircraft. Air New Zealand and Virgin Australia are the two airlines that have formed a partnership that issued a request for information (RFI) to the market to explore options for aviation biofuel, Xinhua news agency reported. Air New Zealand recognised the impact aviation has on the environment and the RFI was a key initiative under its carbon management programme, an official said. "By working in partnership with our alliance partner Virgin Australia we hope we can stimulate our market, drive innovation and investment and potentially uncover a sustainable biofuel supply suitable for our respective operations," said the official. Virgin Australia head of sustainability said that aviation biofuel offered a significant opportunity for the aviation industry to reduce emissions while also building long-term fuel security for the sector. "We are seeing the development of the aviation biofuel industry accelerate internationally but that is not yet the case for our region," he said. "We are confident that our collaboration with Air New Zealand to procure a large volume of aviation biofuel will de-risk investment in the sector, creating high-tech, high-skilled jobs in the region." Both airlines were committed to ensuring aviation biofuel delivered environmental, social and economic benefits, and respondents to the RFI were encouraged to address those principles.