CO2 life cycle
Regenerative aviation fuels are significantly more climate-friendly than fossil kerosene. The burning of sustainable kerosene releases the same amount of CO2 as fossil fuels but the key difference lies in the CO2 cycle - where the pollutants are captured again.
The cycle begins with the energy plants: The plants first remove CO2 from the atmosphere through photosynthesis. This CO2 is released by the combustion in the engine of the aircraft again. The renewable biomass takes up the released CO2 - the cycle starts all over again.
Reduction of CO2 emissions
However, biogenic raw materials are also not completely climate-neutral: Energy is needed for fertilization, harvesting, transport and processing as in the case of fossil fuels. Nevertheless, the balance sheet is extremely positive: depending on the technology, regenerative aviation fuels produce only between 20% to 40% of the CO2 emissions of fossil kerosene.
Fossil kerosene contains carbon that was permanently bound in the crude oil below ground. Combustion converts this carbon into CO2 which enters the atmosphere. Due to its long stay in the atmosphere, CO2 is considered to be the most important greenhouse gas that needs urgent reduction. Renewable-based energy sources can reduce the emission of CO2 as well as other non-CO2 effects that affect aviation in particular to a high degree.