Tees Valley leading the way for the UK as Sustainable Aviation Fuel sector gathers momentum

Sustainable Aviation Fuel Supply Chain Initiative

The annual Sustainable Aviation Fuel Supply Chain conference may have been held at the QEII conference centre overlooking Westminster Abbey in London – but there was another location that stood out at the event – the Tees Valley.

DTW were at the event as part of the Tees Valley Supply Chain, exhibiting alongside the Tees Valley Combined Authority and other businesses based in the area keen to expand their role in the sector.

Last year the government provided almost £40m of funding to five Tees Valley based firms who are looking to lead the way in creating Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF).

All five were in attendance talking about ambitious plans for the future on sites ranging from Billingham through Wilton and on to Teesworks.

It’s clear from last week’s event that there is interest in the area from other operators who are looking at sites for projects, so that number could grow.

There is no doubt the sector is scaling up massively to help the UK and the global aviation sector meet what is a huge Net Zero challenge.

With Government ministers attending, and high-level commitment and investment from Boeing, Airbus, Virgin, BA as well as government, this event showed how vital the SAF sector is to the future of the aviation industry.

There is clearly the potential for Tees Valley to play a huge part in meeting the government target of SAF making up 10% of all aviation fuel used by 2030. The message from industry was clear – the UK Government’s Jet Zero Strategy and funding is hugely welcomed, but in order to meet the national targets it’s just the start.

Action is needed in terms of the appropriate legislation being passed, clarity is needed on the SAF Revenue Certainty Mechanism, and, on Teesside, access to the developing CCUS project is hugely important.

Big thanks to the Tees Valley Combined Authority and the RTC North team, who run the Tees Valley Supply Chain programme, for inviting DTW to be part of the team at the SAF event.

Tees Valley’s attractiveness in terms of skilled labour, manufacturing heritage, available land, a proactive combined authority, the developing CCUS network and a supply chain full of expertise and passion that is ready to engage make this an exciting time to be involved.

There is a real win-win opportunity here for the SAF sector and the Tees Valley to both benefit from jobs and investment as the UK tackles a key part of the Net Zero challenge.

What will be key for businesses coming to the area is engaging effectively with stakeholders of all kinds – potential employees, suppliers, partners as well as politicians and the media.

Want to find out more?

You can read more about our seven simple principles for effective community engagement, and if you’re looking for comms professionals who know the infrastructure and regeneration sector, then drop us a line by emailing letstalk@dtw.co.uk and we’ll be happy to help.