The hydrogen subsidiary of Australia’s Fortescue Metals Group (FMG) [FMG:AU] has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Airbus [AIR:FP] to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in the aviation sector, as reported by Reuters on March 8. The agreement is part of Airbus’s strategy to operate hydrogen-powered aircraft by 2035. Meanwhile, as Australia’s third-largest iron ore exporter, FMG has declared in March 2021 that it will achieve carbon neutrality by 2030, a decade sooner than its prior aim. The two companies will collaborate on green hydrogen research and development.
The aviation industry faces a significant challenge in achieving carbon neutrality since it must accommodate the rising demand for flights while steadily lowering emissions. The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has passed a resolution for the global aviation sector to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. This implies a total reduction of 21.2bn tonnes of carbon emissions by 2050. To do so, the industry must ramp up the use of sustainable aviation fuels (SAF), new aircraft technology, and explore new zero-carbon energy sources such as electricity and hydrogen for their fleets.