Aeromexico, Boeing Conduct First Biofuel Transcontinental Flight

Boeing Co. (BA) said one of its aircraft owned by Aeromexico conducted the first commercial transcontinental flight powered by a biofuel, arriving in Madrid from Mexico City this afternoon.

The 777-200ER aircraft owned by Grupo Aeromexico SAB de CV lasted 11 hours and transported more than 250 passengers with the support of the Mexican government. The plane used as much as 30 percent biofuel from the jatropha curcas oilseed plant, mixed in with traditional kerosene, according to a statement from Boeing.

It was the first commercial transatlantic flight to use biofuel, said Terrance Scott, a spokesman for Boeing in Seattle, said by telephone. The fuel was provided by Boeing and ASA, the Airports and Auxiliary Services.

“The flight was a success, and Boeing was very happy to partner with Aeromexico and the government of Mexico to achieve this significant milestone,” said Van Rex Gallard, vice president of sales for Latin America, Africa and the Caribbean at Boeing Commercial Airplanes.

Last month ABC Aerolineas SA de CV, a Mexican airline known as Interjet, operated the country’s first commercial flight on biofuel. The Interjet flight was the first commercial flight in the Americas to be powered by biofuel, the company said in a statement on its website.

Airlines on July 1 won approval from ASTM International, the U.S. technical standards body, to fly passenger planes using fuel made from inedible plants and organic waste mixed with petroleum-derived fuel. Approval allows for blends of up to 50 percent biofuel. Since then, airlines including Air France-KLM Group and Finnair Oyj (FIA1S) have flown planes using such blends.

To contact the reporter on this story: Katie Linsell in London at Klinsell@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Reed Landberg at landberg@bloomberg.net

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