The use of fuel from the use of food waste has much lower emissions than the current use of aviation gasoline. U.S. researchers are revolutionizing food waste in a revolutionary way: contrary to custom, it is not made into methane, but into paraffin that can also power aircraft, the BBC writes. The method reduces greenhouse gas emissions by about 165 percent compared to conventional fuels: it calculated not only the emissions saved from burning the fuel, but also what could have been released into the atmosphere during the decomposition of food residues removed from the garbage.
The ongoing challenge for aviation is to increase capacity in response to growing demand – during coronavirus-free periods – without unacceptably polluting the atmosphere. America alone consumes 79.5 billion gallons of aviation fuel in pandemic-free years, it is estimated that the number of air passengers could double by the middle of the century, and thus this value. We certainly have a long way to go to use electric powered aircraft for long-haul flights, so there is a growing focus on alternative fuels.
Currently, more environmentally friendly fuels are produced in aircraft in the same way as biodiesel: virgin vegetable oil, grease and oil, and waste grease are used for its production. Biodiesel is currently more profitable to produce from these feedstocks than aviation fuels, so there is a great need for an alternative. The new method uses manure and sewage in addition to food waste. Much of this waste is currently recovered from methane production, but new findings suggest that it could also be two types of sustainably produced paraffin that can be used mixed with commonly used fuel.
The real significance of fuel lies in the fact that not only does it produce less harmful substances during combustion, but by preparing it, it eliminates the possibility that its raw materials emit harmful substances during their decomposition. During combustion, soot formation is 34 percent lower than for fuels used today. The fuel could begin testing in 2023 with Southwest Airlines aircraft. Environmental activists call attention to the need not only to follow the trend towards greener fuels, but also to reduce the number of flights in order for our efforts to have a truly meaningful impact on our environment.
Impact of flight
The impact of aviation on air quality could be two to four times that of climate, according to researchers. Every year, 16,000 people die as a result of air pollution caused by flying. This is 0.4 percent of deaths due to air quality each year. Aviation is the most polluted by CO2 emissions and nitrogen derivatives.