Sustainable Aviation

11 March 2024

Aviation Industry Sets Out Route to Net Zero Flight in Updated Manifesto

Today Sustainable Aviation (SA) launches a new manifesto outlining the aviation industry’s commitment to achieving net zero aviation and minimising the impact of aviation noise, while maximising the economic benefits that aviation delivers across the nations and regions of the UK.

The economic prize for the UK of leading aviation’s transition to a sustainable future is significant. As well as securing aviation’s role connecting the UK to the global economy, facilitating trade, investment, and personal travel, our plan for a net zero sector could generate up to 60,000 new jobs in a UK sustainable aviation fuel industry, and increase UK aerospace’s economic contribution from £8.4bn today to over £37bn by 2050.

In recent years Sustainable Aviation members have achieved significant milestones, including modernising UK airspace to create more efficient flightpaths, a world-first transatlantic flight using 100% sustainable aviation fuels and successful tests of hydrogen-powered aircraft.

However, acceleration of policy support is needed if we are to remain a competitive global aviation hub and capture the new opportunities of net zero flight, in the face of strong competition from overseas competitors who are seeking to corner the market on exciting new technologies.

This new manifesto sets out how the next Government can ensure the UK leads the world in sustainable aviation by:

  • Delivering commercial UK Sustainable Aviation Fuel production at scale this decade with at least five UK SAF plants under construction in 2025 to ensure the UK is well placed to take early mover advantage of SAF production and supply
  • Strengthening the UK’s position as a world-leading innovator of aerospace technologies that gives UK competitive advantage in aviation efficiency and the development and commercialisation of new technologies, including hydrogen
  • Accelerating the airspace modernisation programme with Government support to remove obstacles to early completion
  • Progressing longer-term objectives that will be critical to success of the Net Zero Aviation by 2050 by securing capacity to meet the required energy and carbon removals demand to deliver UK aviation’s transition to net zero

The manifesto will be launched at an event in Parliament today at which speeches will be delivered by Aviation Minister Anthony Browne MP, Labour’s Shadow Minister for Industry and Decarbonisation Sarah Jones MP, former Transport Secretary Chris Grayling MP, and GMB National Secretary Andy Prendergast.

[Read more: A Manifesto For UK Leadership In Sustainable Aviation | Sustainable Aviation]