Aviation Fuels (last updated 2019)


Non-Profit Organizations

ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organization)

ICAO is a UN specialized agency, established by States in 1944 to manage the administration and governance of the Convention on International Civil Aviation (Chicago Convention). The recognition of aviation alternative fuels (AAFs) as a key part of the basket of measures under consideration by ICAO Member States to stabilize emissions from international aviation at their 2020 levels is reflected in ICAO policies and practices related to environmental protection.

CAAFI (Commercial Aviation Alternative Fuels Initiative)

CAAFI aims to facilitate the development and deployment of alternative jet fuels that will significantly reduce emissions associated with aviation operations in commercially meaningful quantities while improving price stability and supply security. The availability of fuels produced from renewable feedstocks and/or other waste-streams will help operators reduce aviation’s net carbon footprint, even as aviation activity increases.



The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) recognizes that biofuels are especially needed in the aviation industry, where liquid fuels are still the only viable fuel source. The commercial aviation industry and the military both have goals to increase domestic renewable jet fuel supply. To reach these targets, BETO is working with related agencies, national laboratories, industry stakeholders, and airline partners to develop research and market opportunities for renewable aviation fuels. BETO, specifically, is advancing alternative jet biofuels through research and development in the areas of feedstocks and fuel conversion and scale-up.

Development of these new uses will take input from government, business and non-profit organizations to spur this development in it’s most effective manner.  Below are organizations that are currently working towards alternative energy development.

Industry and Business

Red Rock Biofuels – Red Rock Biofuels (“RRB”) is developing refineries in the U.S. to convert woody biomass to renewable drop-in jet, diesel and naphtha fuels. Each refinery will utilize 175,000 dry tons of woody biomass feedstock to produce 16 million gallons per year of finished products. The plant is set to provide 30 direct and over 100 indirect jobs for the rural community in Lake County, as well as the over-reaching economic impact to Southern Oregon, its positive psychological impact on the community and subsequent incentive for future generations to stay locally for work. Also highlighted is the importance of forest bi-product removal to the overall health of Oregon’s forests, reducing catastrophic forest fire risk

AVAPCO – The ABBA project will co-produce full replacement renewable jet fuel, gasoline, diesel and Bioplus® nanocellulose from woody biomass in an integrated biorefinery at AVAPCO’s demonstration site in Thomaston, Georgia.

Velocys – A commercial scale biorefinery located in Natchez, Mississippi, is being designed to produce approximately 20 million gallons per year (1,400 barrels per day) of renewable fuels from approximately 1,000 dry tons per day of woody biomass feedstock.  Velocys has the goal of completing all work packages required, concluding commercial negotiations such as feedstock supply and off-take agreements, securing project equity funding, and reaching final investment decision around the middle of 2019.

Can Sugarcane Fuel Airplanes?

Could Garbage Fuel Airplanes?

Fulcrum Bioenergy

Sierra BioFuels Plant is under construction outside of Reno, Nevada and when it begins operations in 2020, it will convert 175,000 tons of household garbage into 10.5 million gallons of fuel each year.

Phase One of Sierra, our Feedstock Processing Facility, is in operation and has the capacity to process more than 1,500 tons of raw household garbage each day and turn it into clean engineered feedstock. Here, waste diverted from the landfill is processed through waste processing equipment to prepare a MSW feedstock ready for conversion to fuel at the Sierra Biorefinery.

Phase Two of Sierra is underway with the construction of the Biorefinery where the MSW feedstock enters Fulcrum’s innovative process where it is gasified into a synthetic gas and converted to a liquid fuel using Fischer-Tropsch technology.

As construction continues on the Sierra Biorefinery, siting and development activities are underway for  three projects in the US Midwest and West Coast. These future plants, which will be sited near large metropolitan areas, will each have the capacity to produce more than 30 million gallons of fuel annually.

Fulcrum Bioenergy Feedstock Plant
Fulcrum Bioenergy BioRefinery Plant