United Airlines has launched the first commercial flight powered with algae biofuel on Monday. The flight was fueled with Solajet, a 40/60 combination of algae-derived biofuel and traditional petroleum fuel. It took off from Houston (known as the big oil capital) and landed less than 3 hours later in Chicago.
According to the company Solazyme, the creator of Solajet, the combination fuel reduces emissions by as much as 93% when compared to the emissions of standard jet fuel. Pretty significant.
United Airlines isn’t the only airline getting into the biofuel game. Alaska Airlines has announced 75% of their commercial passenger flights will be powered by biofuel, using a 20% biofuel blend made from used cooking oil.
Two biofuel-powered flights will also leave Seattle for Washington D.C. on November 9. Horizon Air, the sister airline to Alaska Airlines, will operate certain flights between Seattle, Portland and Washington D.C. over the next several weeks using biofuel blends.