First net zero transatlantic flight to take to the skies in 2023

Passenger airplane being refueled and loaded with cargo before the flight near the terminal in an airport at the sunset.

Secretary of State for Transport has announced plans for a net zero transatlantic flight.

The world’s first net zero emissions transatlantic flight could be delivered by the UK government and industry as early as next year, ushering in a new era of guilt-free flying in the coming decades.

The pioneering flight, on an aircraft powered by 100% sustainable aviation fuel, is expected to take off in 2023.

Innovate UK is partnering with the Department for Transport to deliver the net zero flight fund competition.

Supporting this pioneering initiative

Indro Mukerjee, CEO of Innovate UK, said:

Innovate UK proudly supports this pioneering initiative. This flight, driven through collaboration and bold ambition, is a perfect example of how innovation can and will shape our future lives.

The speed at which this has become a reality is down to the inspiration, ingenuity and investment of all those involved.

Trailblazing net zero emissions flight

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said:

This trailblazing net zero emissions flight, a world first, will demonstrate the vital role that sustainable aviation fuel can play in decarbonising aviation in line with our ambitious net zero targets.

That’s not just great news for the environment, it’s great news for passengers who will be able to visit the Big Apple without increasing damaging greenhouse gas emissions.

It’s crucial that we place sustainability at the heart of the aviation industry’s recovery from COVID-19 and I look forward to working with them on this challenge. It will lower the impact flying across the Atlantic has on the planet.

Boosting the UK economy

Industry estimates suggest that a UK sustainable aviation fuel industry could support up to 5,200 UK jobs directly, as well as a further 13,600 through global exports.

This would help to level up the UK and boost the economy. The industry estimates its annual turnover could reach £2.3 billion by 2040.

The new initiative has come out of the Jet Zero Council, a partnership between industry and government that aims to deliver new technologies and innovative ways to cut aviation emissions while supporting the UK economy.

Top image:  Credit: guvendemir, E+ via Getty Images

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