Current SAF supply remains low at less than 0.05% of total EU aviation fuel use.
The European Commission has proposed a SAF blending mandate for fuel supplied to EU airports, with minimum shares of SAF gradually increasing from 2% in 2025 to 63% in 2050, and a sub-mandate for Power-to-Liquid SAF.
To achieve this mandate, 2.3 million tonnes of SAF would be required by 2030. Approximately 14.8 million tonnes of SAF would be required by 2040, and 28.6 million tonnes by 2050.
Drop-in SAF will play a key part in decarbonising the aviation sector as they can be used within the existing global fleet and fuel supply infrastructure.
SAF pathways such as Hydroprocessed Esters and Fatty Acids (HEFA), Alcohols to Jet, Biomass Gasification + Fischer-Tropsch, and Power-to-Liquid (PtL) are expected to play a major role in decarbonisation in the short/medium term, and will remain the main contributor for long-haul flights in the long term.
Currently certified SAF are subject to a maximum blending ratio of 50% with fossil-based jet fuel depending on the feedstock-production pathway considered, but industry and fuel standard committees are looking into the future use of 100% SAF by 2030.
SAF are certified by Sustainability Certification Schemes against criteria defined at EU level in the Renewable Energy Directive and at global level in the CORSIA framework.
While SAF are currently more expensive than fossil-based jet fuel, cost savings are expected notably through future production economies of scale. SAF prices can vary depending on the production pathway, associated production costs and fluctuations in the energy market.