What do aeroplanes and French fries have in common?Apparently, they now both use the same frying grease.
On Wednesday, Alaska Airlines launched its first commercial test-flight from Seattle to Washington D.C. partially running on cooking oil. This was just the first of 75 flights the airline plans to operate using a blend of 80% conventional jet fuel and 20% cooking oil.
Dynamic Fuels, the maker of the food biofuel, says the cooking oil comes from used frying grease or fast-food restaurant discards. Brian Merchant of TreeHugger, who was a passenger on the plane’s maiden voyage, reports that the jet fuel does not “smell like the inside of a greasy kitchen.”
So far, the benefits of biofuel-powered planes are mixed.
The sustainable substitute costs six times as much as traditional aviation fuel and only cuts greenhouse gas emissions by 10% on each flight, a spokeswoman for Alaska told the Guardian.
This is actually the second commercial biofuel plane to fly this week. On Monday, United Airlines sent the first algae-fuelled flight from Houston to Chicago.
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