California-based alternative fuels developer Fulcrum Bioenergy will receive a $30 million equity investment from United Airlines, described as “the single largest investment by a U.S. airline in alternative fuels.”
The deal is expected to eventually lead to a reduction in the airline’s carbon footprint through the use of sustainable aviation biofuel, as well as diverting waste from landfills.
United and Fulcrum also have entered into an agreement to tentatively work on five joint projects expected to produce about 180 million gallons of the fuel annually.
The two companies also negotiated a long-term supply agreement under which United can potentially purchase at least 90 million gallons of sustainable aviation fuel from Fulcrum a year for a minimum of 10 years at a cost said to be “competitive with conventional jet fuel.
The agreement also puts Fulcrum closer to finally realizing its goal of opening a plant in Nevada, in the industrial park where Tesla is planning to debut its massive battery factory, one report noted.
Fulcrum, in reporting the United deal, said it was meant to “partly… help work on the factory, which has been planned for nearly seven years. Higher than expected costs and longer development times, have hampered the project.”
As reported last December, California-based Fulcrum Bioenergy has been awarded a $70 million grant from the U.S. Department of Defense to build a plant east of Reno to help speed delivery of its jet fuel—made by converting household garbage. Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev. said the grant announced Friday is in addition to a $105 million loan guarantee U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack confirmed on Sept. 4. The plant is expected to produce more than 10 million gallons per year of advanced biofuels while diverting over 200,000 tons of garbage from landfills by 2016.
The Fulcrum Bioenergy grant is part of a larger grant round totaling $210 million by the DoD for advanced biofuels. Other grants