Korean Air embarks on other major green initiatives

A Korean Air Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner. Photo: Korean Air.

Preparing for the future of carbon-neutral aviation, Korean Air has embarked on another green project to launch Korea’s hydrogen fuel infrastructure.

In February, Korean Air signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Incheon International Airport Corporation (IIAC), Airbus and Air Liquide to cooperate on the supply of hydrogen for aviation and the development of relevant infrastructure.

The MoU is aligned with Airbus’ goal of developing the world’s first zero-emission hydrogen-powered commercial aircraft by 2035 and confirms that Korean Air is actively participating in welcoming this alternative energy paradigm shift.

The MoU paves the way for cooperation between stakeholders in various areas, from the development of hydrogen infrastructure at airports, to establishing a roadmap for the introduction of hydrogen, to by ground handling logistics.

Korean Air will also focus its expertise on overall operational activities, including ground handling planning, maintenance and flight operations, and IIAC on airport facility research and development. Airbus and Air Liquide will analyze the domestic demand for hydrogen aircraft and respectively establish a roadmap for the introduction of hydrogen.

“This MoU will be a starting point for the Korean domestic aviation industry to systematize a hydrogen supply chain system and infrastructure development, where the introduction of hydrogen as an alternative fuel has been slow. compared to other industries,” Mr. Soo Keun said. Lee Executive Vice President and Director of Safety and Operations, Korean Air.

Last year, Korean Air signed a memorandum of understanding with Hyundai Oilbank to manufacture and promote the application of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) and also partnered with SK Energy to purchase carbon-neutral jet fuel from use on the Korean domestic network. Additionally, the airline’s introduction of the Airbus A220-300 to its fleet will reduce carbon emissions per seat by 25% compared to existing models of similar capacity, demonstrating its commitment to environmental awareness. .

Korean Air is committed to various ways of reducing carbon emissions to achieve carbon neutrality, as well as the successful development of Korea’s domestic hydrogen power industry.

Photo: (From left to right) Guillaume Cottet (President and Representative Director, Air Liquide Korea), Fabrice Espinosa (President, Airbus Korea), Hyoung-Wook Jeon (Vice President of Infrastructure Division, IIAC), Soo Keun Lee (Executive Vice President and Chief Security and Operations Officer, Korean Air).

Korean Air actively participates in the Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Program for International Aviation (CORSIA) of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and showcases environmentally friendly and highly efficient aircraft.

In 2017, Korean Air became the first Korean airline to use sustainable aviation fuel (SAF), while in June last year the airline also partnered with Hyundai Oil Bank to develop a basis for the manufacture of biofuels and its use.

In 2019, Korean Air replaced single-use plastics such as straws, coffee stirrers and cups with environmentally friendly paper products, and also carried out tree planting activities in Mongolia and the the Kubuqi Desert in China.

Korean Air has also made efforts to improve its environmental, social and governance (ESG) management and has set up an ESG committee, which reviews its management strategies with a focus on ESG.


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