Bloomberg News

Branson’s Carbon War Room Launches Jet-Fuel Reduction Initiative

December 05, 2011

Dec. 5 (Bloomberg) -- The Carbon War Room, funded by Virgin Atlantic Airways Ltd. founder Richard Branson, today launched a web and information site aimed at reducing the use of traditional jet fuels by as much as 50 percent.

Branson announced the creation of a ranking system for airlines that use biofuels with the largest publisher of scientific information, Reed Elsevier Plc, owner of the LexisNexis database, during the climate talks in Durban.

The online resource contains information about the sector and facilitates contact between producers of biofuels and the aviation industry as “the airline industry generates about 2-3% of carbon emissions” said Suzanne Hunt of the Huntgreen environmental agency, based in Washington, D.C.

“This might not sound like much but it is accelerating very fast,” Hunt said. “We started talking to buyers and producers of aviation fuel and discovered that the technology is ready and demand outstrips supply but that there was not much information available that would connect buyers and producers.”

The Carbon War Room teamed with Elsevier as “we know that a lot of the solutions to the energy problems have to come from new technologies,” said Jan Paul Grolle of Elsevier. Interviews with hundreds of people working in the alternative energy sector “indicated they lack reliable information.”

The request was to make sure that any information is organized by experts, reviewed and made available. “And we are not only talking about jet fuel but also other biofuel sectors.” Grolle said.

“The biggest problem at the moment is the high price of renewable energy,” Hunt said, “but if demand increases, the price can come down. Producers also lack access to finance, and we are facilitating contact between investors and producers.”

To contact the reporter on this story: Niki Moore in Johannesburg at nmoore19@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Randall Hackley at rhackley@bloomberg.net


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