Heathrow announces £71m SAF incentive for airlines


Heathrow Airport announced that it is planning to extend its carbon cutting scheme for third year through a £71m scheme to help halve the price gap between kerosene and SAF for airlines.  

In 2024, £71m will be available to airlines through the incentive, targeting up to 2.5% of aviation fuel used at Heathrow to be SAF –  amounting to 155,000 tonnes of aviation fuel.

The scheme encourages airlines to switch to SAF by approximately halving the price gap between kerosene and its greener alternative, making SAF a commercial reality for airlines.

In 2024, the scheme is targeting up to 341,755 tonne reduction of carbon equivalent emissions from flights if 70% GHG emissions reduction is achieved.

“SAFs are a proven reality – they have already powered hundreds of thousands of flights and we will soon show we can fly the Atlantic fossil fuel free. Heathrow’s first of its kind incentive scheme has seen SAF use at the airport ramp up in recent years,” said Matt Gorman, Director of Carbon, Heathrow.

Heathrow is aiming for 11% SAF usage by 2030, scaling up the incentive year on year. Integrating SAF into the fuel supply is one of the airport’s most significant steps to cut carbon, on the road to net zero by 2050.

However, Heathrow also lamented lack of inaction from the government to extend support for development of SAF in the country.

Heathrow said that ministers needs to act now to secure Britain’s world-leading aviation sector’s future, in a world without carbon.

It further added that “the Chancellor missed a prime opportunity to invest in a UK SAF industry during the Autumn Statement. Thousands of jobs, billions added to the economy and the UK’s fuel security are within grasp if government creates a policy environment which cultivates UK SAF production. Low production volumes and high costs remain the barrier to wider SAF use – which is where Heathrow’s incentive scheme is helping to bridge the gap.”

Gorman added that: “Now, the government needs to capitalise on this strong demand and legislate for a revenue certainty mechanism to enable a home-grown SAF industry, before it is too late for the UK to benefit from jobs, growth and energy security this would bring.”