Emmanuel Macron has decided to invest in the sector to develop new engines, new devices and biofuels.
By LL with AFP
Mize on the green plane is Emmanuel Macron’s bet. On Friday, the president announced a series of aid and investments for the sector amounting to several hundred million euros, in order to develop new engines, new devices and biofuels.
The president announced on Friday a broad support plan for the development of “zero emission” aircraft, consisting of several hundred million in aid and investment, including the installation of a biofuel plant in Lacq (Pyrénées- Atlantics).
“We French people must be the champions of ultra-low-energy aircraft […] And we have the means to be, ”launched the Head of State during a trip to the Safran aircraft engine factory in Villaroche (Seine-et-Marne).
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One in two commercial aircraft sold in the world is designed by Airbus, particularly in France, and competition promises to be fierce between Europeans, Americans and Chinese to arrive first on the decarbonization market.
To respond to this, the State will “triple its effort over the period 2024-2030”, i.e. “300 million euros per year”, to support the development of a new engine that is even more fuel efficient as well as the design of lighter planes, said Emmanuel Macron, three days before the opening of the Paris Air Show, a major global meeting in the sector.
From 3 to 4% of global greenhouse gas emissions
At the same time, the State will invest 200 million euros in the development of innovative biofuels, with the objective of producing 500,000 tonnes per year by 2030.
A sustainable fuels plant, BioTJET, supported by the company Elyse Energy, will in particular “open in Lacq, in a region that knows energy well”, and “create 700 direct jobs”, i.e. 100 on the site and 600 on all recycling players, affirmed the Head of State.
Produced from used oils, wood or algae residues, sustainable fuels (SAF) can be used in addition to kerosene in current aircraft, but their production is still in its infancy.
Emmanuel Macron also announced an envelope of 50 million euros in favor of “emerging players, start-ups” to “develop small hybrid, electric or hydrogen planes”.
The challenges of decarbonization are enormous in the aviation sector, which is once again booming after a collapse in its activity during the Covid-19 pandemic and which represents 3 to 4% of global greenhouse gas emissions.
Air transport should return this year to its level of activity before the Covid crisis – with 4.5 billion passengers transported in 2019 – and could double it by 2050.
According to Airbus, the global aircraft fleet is expected to double in the next few years, reaching 46,000 aircraft in 2042.