Association Webinars: The Challenge for Sustainable Aviation Fuels Beyond COVID-19


Slides: View Robert Boyd's slides

Session viewers will come away with insights into:

  • The efforts and strategies of the aviation industry to reduce its carbon footprint.
  • The development and use of Sustainable Aviation Fuels to date, and the onset of the Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA).
  • The outlook towards the long term goal of reducing by 50% the emissions in 2050 using 2005 as the baseline year.
  • Short and long-term impacts of the COVID-19 demand shock for the aviation industry.
  • The future for SAF and the pathways most likely to address the challenge


Steve Griffiths is Senior Vice President for Research and Development and Professor of Practice at the Khalifa University of Science and Technology. At Khalifa University, he oversees the development and implementation of the university's research strategy and operations. Among his activities external to Khalifa University, Dr. Griffiths is advisor to the UAE Research Program for Rain Enhancement Science, a Zayed Sustainability Prize Selection Committee member, a member of the Dubai Future Council on Energy and an elected member of the Global Energy Prize International Award Committee.

He is also Associate Editor and Editorial Board member of Elsevier's international journal Energy Strategy Reviews, Associate Editor and Editorial Board member of Springer's international journal Energy Transitions and a non-resident Fellow of the Payne Institute at the Colorado School of Mines.

Dr. Griffiths holds a PhD in Chemical Engineering from MIT and an MBA from the MIT Sloan School of Management.


Alejandro Rios-Galvan is the Director of the Sustainable Bioenergy Research Consortium (SBRC) at Khalifa University of Science and Technology (KU). The SBRC was established in 2011 and has as its founding members The Boeing Company, Etihad Airways and UOP-Honeywell, that together with Safran, GE, ADNOC Refining and Bauer Resources, are spearheading research in the use of salt water and halophytes for the production of sustainable aviation fuels.

Dr. Rios was Director of ASA Fuel Services for 11 years, where he oversaw the operation and management of a network of 60 fuel farms and their 2,000+ into-plane operations.

He holds a Bachelor's degree in Civil Engineering from the Universidad Iberoamericana in Mexico City, and Masters and Ph. D. degrees in Civil and Environmental Engineering, from Cornell University, USA.

Jim Hileman is the Chief Scientific and Technical Advisor for Environment and Energy for the Federal Aviation Administration. In this capacity, he serves as the agency's technical expert for research and advanced technology development in the areas of environment and energy. He has responsibility for the environment and energy research portfolio of the FAA, which includes the Continuous Lower Energy, Emissions and Noise (CLEEN) Program; the Aviation Sustainability Center (ASCENT), the FAA Center of Excellence for Alternative Jet Fuels and Environment; and the Commercial Aviation Alternative Fuels Initiative (CAAFI), among other efforts. In addition to being a Chief Scientist for the FAA, Dr. Hileman is the Co-Rapporteur of the Fuels Task Group (FTG) of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Committee on Aviation Environmental Protection (CAEP), which is determining how fuels are credited under the Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA). Prior to joining the FAA, Dr. Hileman was a Principal Research Engineer within the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics at MIT. His work focused on alternative jet fuels and innovative aircraft concepts that could reduce the impacts of aviation on noise, air quality and global climate change. He holds a B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the Ohio State University.

Robert Boyd joined the International Air Transport Association (IATA) in 2013 and holds the position of Assistant Director, Aviation Environment. IATA is the trade association representing more than 290 commercial airlines and he leads IATA's work on sustainable aviation fuel (SAF). A key focus is to accelerate the global deployment of SAF while addressing policy, economic, sustainability and logistic challenges. Robert serves as a member of the United Nations ICAO Fuels Task Group, with particular focus on how SAF will be recognized under CORSIA. He is also a Director and Treasurer of the Round Table on Sustainable Biomaterials (RSB). Robert's studies include a bachelor's degree in Commerce and post graduate studies in Applied Finance. In 2008 he earned a Master's in Business Economics from the University of Queensland. Prior to joining IATA Robert was the Head Economist for Virgin Australia Airlines.


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