> World Aviation Festival 2022


5th October 2022

Synthetic fuels go under the spotlight as Zero joins the World Aviation Festival

5th October, 2022: The increasingly urgent quest for carbon neutral solutions to support sustainability in the aviation industry was high on the agenda at this year’s World Aviation Festival. As a leader in the synthetic fuels sector, Zero was invited to join an expert panel in Amsterdam to discuss the subject and drew an eager crowd keen to learn more about fossil-free fuels.

The annual event, which has grown to become one of the largest and most established aviation shows in the world, was back to full speed this year and attracted a large audience of airlines, airports and travel technology companies from around the world. With a focus on promoting innovative technologies from new companies in the aviation and travel sector, this was a sweet spot for Zero.

As such, founder and CEO Paddy Lowe was delighted to accept an invite to represent the company alongside some of the world’s well-known start-up incubators and accelerators at the event. On Wednesday, he joined a panel to discuss the topic ‘how to utilise next generation technology, innovation and new types of fuel to get closer to achieving real scalable solutions for clean air travel'. Alongside Lowe for the discussion were Daniel Riefer, associate partner with McKinsey; Adrian Gane, Director Sustainability, Industry and International Affairs, Ethihad; Aexander Küper, Director Fuel E&S, International Air Transport Association (IATA); and Max Held, Aviation Lead at Mission Possible, an alliance of climate leaders focused on decarbonise industries such as aviation.

The discussion delivered many interesting points and Lowe explained: “Hydrocarbons are always associated with negativity when it comes to climate change, but we are not seeing the real picture.When extracted from the ground, they are adding carbon into the atmosphere – but by making them from CO2 and electrolised water, we create a circular process, achieving carbon neutrality.

“Rather than painting this evil picture of carbon, we need to understand that it is a crucial building block on the planet – not just in industry, but in nature through photosynthesis. The airline industry is just one of many where electrification and even hydrogen fuels cannot provide the required power to weight performance that is needed. So we need hydrocarbons, we just don’t need to dig them out the ground.”

The event, which was held at the RAI, is an important one on the exhibition calendar and this year brought a community of 5,000 global executives together, with 400 speakers over three days. Lowe took the opportunity to network with the many airline industry executives who attended, with Zero supporting this year as a silver level sponsor.