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GOL to give commercial debut to new Amyris-Total biofuel

GOL is to begin the first commercial route with farnesane, a recently approved renewable jet fuel from Amyris and its partner Total.

GOL has committed to fly its Boeing 737 fleet with up to a 10% blend of the renewable fuel on its US to Brazil routes starting with initial flights later in July. Supported by Boeing, the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and other partners, Amyris is working to bring this new, renewable jet fuel to more commercial airlines.

“We at Amyris are thrilled that GOL will be using our renewable jet fuel blend for their flight route from the United States to Brazil, the first of what we expect to be many routes with the world’s leading airlines. With our partner Total, Amyris is working to support the performance goals set by the aviation industry by bringing to market a drop-in, low-carbon jet fuel solution,” explained John Melo, president and CEO at Amyris.

Developed by Amyris and Total, this new aviation renewable fuel meets the rigorous performance requirements set for Jet A/A-1 fuel used by the global commercial aviation industry. On 15 June, the ASTM revised its jet fuel standard, paving the way for airlines to use Synthesized Iso-Paraffin (SIP) farnesane as a jet fuel component in commercial airlines globally. When produced sustainably, farnesane can reduce greenhouse-gas emissions by up to 80% on a lifecycle basis compared with traditional petroleum fuels.

“This low carbon and sustainable biofuel is part of a major commitment of GOL to address the IATA Carbon Neutral Growth 2020 Program. We are working closely with the Brazilian Biojet Fuel Platform to achieve the 1% blend milestone in early 2016, beginning with more than 200 sustainable flights during the World Cup in Brazil,” remarked Pedro Scorza, director of technical operations with GOL. “Using the Amyris-Total renewable jet fuel in our flight route from the United States to Brazil is another way to bring public awareness to the importance of sustainable fuel solutions to the global environment.”

In addition to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, industry studies have shown that farnesane reduces particulate matter emissions by 3%, reducing pollution near airports and major metropolitan areas. This renewable jet fuel, which is made in Brazil from sugarcane, can be up to 30% more efficient in land use compared with other renewable fuels (by litres/hectare) and it could become approximately 70% more efficient than such fuels when new technologies, like sugar from cellulosic feedstocks, become commercially available.

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