Alaska Airlines Begins Biofuel Flights

But it's costing a fortune
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 10, 2011 2:25 PM CST
Alaska Airlines Begins Biofuel Flights
An Alaska Airlines jet is seen at SeaTac Airport in SeaTac, Wash., in this file photo.   (AP Photo/David Zalubowski, File)

(Newser) – Alaska Airlines’ first biofuel-powered flights took off yesterday, kicking off an expensive trial program designed to improve the airline’s environmental footprint. Passengers on the first two flights—which were to DC and Portland, respectively—received a “Welcome to Greener Skies” flier explaining the program, the Anchorage Daily News reports. The 75 trips will run on a blend of regular fuel and 20% biofuel made from cooking oil.

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Biofuel has just as many carbon emissions as traditional jet fuel, but it’s considered “greener” because it’s produced from renewable resources. But it doesn’t come cheap—Alaska dropped $476,000 for 28,000 gallons, which amounts to $17 per gallon, six times the cost of normal jet fuel. (Read more Alaska Airlines stories.)

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