Sustainable aviation fuel: Where will the market be 10 years from now?

Author Argus

In the second of a two-part series we look towards the future of the sustainable aviation fuel market and its outlook for growth. Are market participants bullish on increased supply and demand of the fuel?

We asked industry experts at the recent Argus Biofuels and Carbon Markets Summit, What is your outlook on the sustainable aviation fuel market 10 years from now? Do you think the fuel will be used at most airports and by most airlines?

Learn more about the sustainable aviation fuel market and see the first part in this series.


The global aviation industry is developing a thirst for sustainable aviation fuel. Through self-governance by airlines, incentive programs on the US west coast, pending mandates in Europe and growing credit offset programs in North America, sustainable aviation fuel is quickly becoming a highly sought-after commodity worldwide.  

In the last video of this two-part interview series we spoke with sustainable aviation fuel experts and asked what needs to be done to grow the market.  
In this second of two parts, we asked the same experts to share their thoughts on the sustainable aviation fuel outlook for the next 10 years. 

Bryan Sherbacow, Chief Commercial Officer, World Energy: I'm very excited about the next 10 years. We actually started our adventure in sustainable aviation fuels 10 years ago, and at that point, nobody understood the opportunity within sustainable aviation fuel, and we didn't have the standards for it, the visibility, the understanding of how it worked, etc. We've accomplished that over the last 10 years, and we're really at a tipping point at this moment in terms of the buy-in, in terms of the discussion about it. And by educating greater audiences, we're creating more and more demand, more awareness. And so 10 years from now when I look forward, I do think that we're gonna have significant use. We do need better policy to incentivize more production, but I'm excited, because of the increasing discussion, that we're gonna drive that policy change. And 10 years from now, we're gonna have a different world where sustainable aviation fuel is gonna be the new normal.

Erin Cooke, Sustainability and Environmental Policy Director, San Francisco International Airport: We think there is a market potential of about 350 million gallons right now, but we know it's going to accelerate much beyond that. So, in California, we use about four billion gallons of fuel. Our goal in working with the state of California is to be able to get to a 5% by 2025, which is about 150 million gallons. We think that that is replicable across the state. The nice point in terms of infrastructure and supply chain is that 80% of that fuel is demanded by two airports, SFO and LAX. So, we think that it definitely is a scalable model. We also know that the production capability is happening across the US, and we expect that to grow over time.

Steve Csonka, Executive Director, Commercial Aviation Alternative Fuels Initiative (CAAFI): 10 years from now I think a lot of airlines will be using it, not just in the US but around the world. I think we'll see a lot of business aviation also using it. Here's the metric that I use with respect to my advocacy for the entire industry. I'd like to offer my sponsor, North American Carriers, the ability to meet their CORSIA obligations through SAF usage alone. If I were able to do that they'd need about 350 to 400 million gallons per year incremental capacity year after year after year to do that. So if I'm successful, if we're all successful in 10 years, that wraps up to about 3.5 billion.

We hope this provided insight into the sustainable aviation fuel market. For more information and an overview on the global sustainable aviation fuel market check out the Argus white paper, Argus shines a light on the growing sustainable aviation fuel market



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