Lufthansa & DB Schenker's First CO2-neutral Freight Flights
The first carbon-neutral freight flight between and has begun operating on its Frankfurt to Shanghai service. The logistics service provider and the air freight company will transport goods from Siemens Healthcare, among others, on this flight. Both organisations stated they are committed to sustainable air transport and agreed in November 2020 to exchange views on environmental issues and to jointly promote them - including the move away from fossil fuels in air freight transport.
German Federal Minister of Transport and Digital Infrastructure, Andreas Scheuer, said: "Even in the most severe crisis that has ever hit aviation, Lufthansa Cargo and DB Schenker are facing up to their responsibility for climate protection and are operating their first freight flight from Frankfurt to Shanghai entirely with sustainable alternative fuel. This is an important signal right now that the companies are looking to the future despite all the concerns and are taking important steps to make aviation more sustainable.”
- The first carbon-neutral cargo flights departed from Frankfurt arriving in Shanghai
- DB Schenker and Lufthansa will begin offering regular carbon neutral service in summer 2021
- Healthcare goods from Siemens were included on the first flight
Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) refers to sustainable, synthetic kerosene. It is currently produced mainly from biomass, for example from sustainable or recyclable vegetable and cooking oils. In future, non-plant-based renewable fuels will also be available. The best-known production process for this is the so-called power-to-liquid concept (PtL) based on renewable electricity, water and CO2.
By using SAF, the fossil CO2 emissions of a flight with conventional kerosene are completely avoided. During combustion in the engine, only CO2 is released that was previously removed from the atmosphere, for example during plant growth. SAF is thus the first real alternative to fossil aviation fuel and the key to climate-friendly, CO2-neutral air traffic.
Industry Call to Action
Jochen Thewes, CEO of DB Schenker, said: "We are already further ahead than many think when it comes to climate protection in air freight. We can demonstrate this with the first CO2-neutral freight flight in history. With the start of the 2021 summer flight schedule, DB Schenker will offer greenhouse gas-neutral air freight as a regular product. As a logistics provider, DB Schenker is the link between the loading industry and the airlines in order to actually implement climate protection in air freight. I am convinced that there is a great demand for this type of green transport, and I am looking forward to seeing who will follow suit.”
In addition, DB Schenker and Lufthansa Cargo are also using a reforestation project to compensate for the CO2 emissions and other greenhouse gases that result from the production of the biomass, processing and transport of the SAF. The aim of the cooperation is, among other things, the regular exchange of information, the promotion of environmentally friendly technologies such as SAF. DB Schenker and Lufthansa Cargo combine the start of their first CO2-neutral flights with a call to shippers, logistics providers, airfreight carriers and also politicians to work together on expanding production and infrastructure and thus improving the availability of sustainable aviation fuel. Both companies will regularly offer CO2-neutral air freight as a product for the shipping industry from the summer flight schedule onwards.