Air Products has announced it will join with World Energy (Boston, Massachusetts) to build a $2 billion expansion project at World Energy’s sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) production and distribution hub in Paramount, California. The facility expansion, which will come online in 2025, will have a total fuel capacity of 340 million gallons per year, and will be crucial to the energy transition as the site is the world’s first commercial scale—and North America’s only—SAF production facility. World Energy’s SAF is made of renewable resources without fossil-based feedstock, the company says.
The approximately $2-billion project will be Air Products’ second most expensive US investment behind its $4.5-billion Louisiana clean energy complex for blue hydrogen announced in 2021.
The 25-year, take-or-pay agreement will include Air Products constructing, operating, and owning a new hydrogen plant with renewable fuels manufacturing facilities to be operated by World Energy, Air Products says. Additionally, Air Products will extend its Southern California hydrogen pipeline to supply hydrogen to the existing World Energy facility as well as provide low-or-zero-carbon hydrogen once available.
“We are very pleased to be working with World Energy, enabling another US megaproject that will provide measurable sustainability benefits and advance California’s decarbonization goals by producing a renewable fuel to meet the growing demands of the aviation industry,” Seifi Ghasemi, Air Products’ chairman, president, and CEO says.
“Getting real about net-zero aviation is going to require the mobilization of resources unlike anything that has ever come before,” says Gene Gebolys, CEO of World Energy. “[To decarbonize aviation by 2050] is an immense undertaking. But it must be done, and it requires that we move with speed, collaboration, and determination befitting the problem we aim to tackle.”
Its lifecycle carbon emissions are up to 80% lower than conventional jet fuel, and is currently used in a 50/50 blend level with conventional fuel for commercial use. World Energy says it is working to gain approval for pure 100% renewable SAF use in commercial aviation.
By 2050, the Paramount facility will produce fuels that will displace over 76 million metric tons of carbon dioxide, which is the equivalent of 3.8 million carbon-net-zero flights from Los Angeles to New York.
by Jameson Croteau
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