Shell withdraws from UK sustainable aviation fuels project

Article by Amanda Doyle

Artist's impression of the Altalto site in Immingham

SHELL has withdrawn from a collaboration with Velocys and British Airways to develop the commercial-scale Altalto sustainable aviation fuels facility.

Altalto will be the UK’s first commercial waste-to-jet fuels facility, with planning permission granted last year at a site in Immingham, Lincolnshire. The facility will convert 500,000 t/y of waste into 60m L/y of fuel. Shell’s withdrawal from Altalto was by mutual consent, according to a statement from Velocys.

The Altalto project will continue according to its current development plan and there is no direct financial impact. Velocys and British Airways are working to secure finance, and discussions with potential parties have been underway for several months. Velocys also expects to apply for significant funding from the UK Government.

Henrik Wareborn, Velocys CEO, said: “We are looking forward to moving Altalto Immingham to the next stage of development in 2021. Altalto Immingham is the most advanced commercial SAF project in the UK and is ready to take advantage of the strong push from both Government and industry for the decarbonisation of aviation, especially using waste feedstocks.”

Matthew Tipper, Shell VP New Fuels, said: “Shell are pursuing multiple opportunities across our global portfolio. On this occasion, we have decided to focus our resources on other lower-carbon fuels opportunities which leverage our own technology. We will continue to work with the aviation industry and the UK Government, as part of the Jet Zero Council, to help decarbonise UK aviation. We wish Altalto every success in the future.”

Article by Amanda Doyle

Staff Reporter, The Chemical Engineer

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