Major European airline will charge flyers an ‘environmental fee’ for using sustainable fuel

GERMAN airline group Lufthansa has announced it is adding an environmental charge to its ticket prices, in a bid to offset the cost of sustainable aviation fuels and other initiatives aimed at reducing the amount of carbon emissions generated by its flights. 

The company is the first of its kind in Europe to introduce such a fee, according to a report from Euronews, but other airlines are likely to follow suit. 

The charge will come into force from January 1, 2025 and will add as much as €72 to fares. 

Lufthansa has said that it needs the extra money so that it can comply with EU regulations on bringing down emissions. 

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Sustainable aviation fuels are five times more expensive to produce than regular jet fuel.

The extra cost of using sustainable aviation fuels has prompted airlines to warn for years now that ticket prices would have to go up, and it is Lufthansa that has made the first move to bring in such a surcharge. 

The range of the surcharge will run from as little as €1 to €72, and will be levied on flights departing from the 27 European Union member states, and the United Kingdom, Norway and Sweden, according to Euronews. 

Lufthansa group’s airlines are Lufthansa itself, Eurowings, Austrian, Swiss, Brussels Airlines and Lufthansa City Airlines.

Sustainable aviation fuels are alternative fuels that do not use petroleum, and reduce emissions from air transport. 

They can be made from renewable feedstocks such as solid food waste, woody biomass, fats, greases or oils. 

They are, however, up to five times more expensive to produce than regular jet fuel, according to Euronews. 

An initial quota will come into force from January 1 of next year for a 2% blend of sustainable fuels to be added to regular fuel for EU departures. 

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