JAL, Yokohama City to Cooperate on Recycled Cooking Oil Aviation Fuel Project; Looking for Local Support

The Yomiuri Shimbun
Japan Airline’s new A350-1000 aircraft, which uses SAF as fuel

YOKOHAMA — The Yokohama municipal government signed a deal on Wednesday with Japan Airlines Co. to recycle used cooking oil from households for use as sustainable aviation fuel (SAF).

This is said to be the first time a local government and JAL have worked together on a project exclusively focused on SAF.

SAF is produced from used cooking oil, garbage and other materials. It can reduce CO2 emissions from airplanes by about 80% compared to jet fuel made from crude oil. The government has a goal to substitute at least 10% of all aviation fuel used in the country with SAF by 2030.

Securing raw materials is one of the challenges to implementing SAF. JAL’s solution is to collect used cooking oil, which is treated as waste, from households. Consequently, efforts to raise public awareness about recycling used cooking oil are also expected.

To collect the used cooking oil, deposit boxes will be set up at supermarkets. The oil will be collected by companies, recycled and turned into biofuel. The SAF will be put into practical use as early as 2025 when the production environment is ready.

The project will launch in mid-March at Aeon Food Style supermarket’s Kamoi branch in Midori Ward, Yokohama. JAL and the city government are also planning to sell bottles for depositing oil and organize publicity events with JAL employees. They hope that the activity will spread to more facilities in the new fiscal year starting in April.

“I hope that more people will be responsive to the project and support our efforts,” said Yukio Nakagawa, an executive officer of JAL, at a press conference on Wednesday.

“It will be an important first step to raise awareness about decarbonizing among the residents,” said Yokohama Mayor Takeharu Yamanaka.