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United Backs Fulcrum With $30 Million to Get Jet Fuel From Waste

United Continental Holdings Inc., owner of the world’s second-biggest airline, is making a $30 million equity investment in Fulcrum BioEnergy Inc. to help develop fuel from garbage for its jets.

The closely held U.S. biofuel producer will begin supplying United as early as 2018, with deliveries increasing to 90 million gallons (340 million liters) annually by 2021, Chicago-based United said in a statement Tuesday. The target, enough for about 20,000 flights, would be the equivalent of approximately 2 percent of the 3.9 billion gallons the carrier used last year.