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Delta Airlines’ private refinery to start biofuel blending

Delta's private refinery will soon add biofuels to its mix.

Delta’s private refinery will soon add biofuels to its mix.
image: Robert Alexander / Getty Images (beautiful pictures)

Did you know that Delta Airlines owns its own fuel refinery? Yes, me too, and now, follow a report published on Friday by Reuters, that refinery may be ready to start producing biofuels. That’s great, but don’t expect the jet exhaust of your next 737 flight to smell like french fries.

It seems like Delta’s start to blend biofuels into their existing jet fuel mix is ​​more of a game to get out of paying for emissions compliance credits than to change the way they deliver. fuel your aircraft. US Renewable Fuel Standards require refineries to blend increasing amounts of biofuels into their products or buy credits from refineries. These credits, as you might have guessed, are not cheap.

Delta’s Refinery (aka Monroe Energy) – which it bought about a decade ago to save a bit of cash on fuel – will now be able to start selling credits to other refineries which, if it’s anything like Tesla and its carbon offsetting credit sales, could prove to be a pretty lucrative sideline for airlines.

Monroe Energy has historically struggled to make a profit under Delta’s ownership, and the company has tried to sell it off several times. That changed this year when Russia’s military action against Ukraine sent prices soaring, costing the refinery $323 million between January and June.

The decision to retrofit the refinery to have biofuel mixing capability was a big one, necessitating the construction of two large storage tanks, with one of those tanks already built as announced and the other one. The next one is scheduled for completion in October.

We attempted to reach Delta for comment but didn’t hear back in time for publication.

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