Renewable diesel powers Hamburg airport's heavy-duty ground fleet

By Ron Kotrba | November 22, 2016

Neste Corp. announced that Hamburg airport in Germany has started using its renewable diesel to reduce the airport’s reliance on fossil fuels and significantly reduce its carbon footprint.

Renewable diesel will power heavy-duty vehicles such as aircraft tugs and fire trucks in Hamburg airport’s ground fleet, which will complement other alternative energies used on-site. Neste says this will make Hamburg airport the first major international airport in the world to replace all fossil fuels with renewables in its entire diesel-powered ground fleet.

The airport’s fleet vehicle operators reported less soot and smell, and slightly reduced consumption, associated with renewable diesel use during the four months of tests preceding the final decision, according to Neste. In addition, users indicated very good engine start performance and reduced maintenance, due to less soot and oil dilution.

“We are very pleased to support Hamburg airport in its transformation towards becoming fossil-free,” said Kaisa Hietala, the executive vice president of renewable products at Neste. “It is always a joy to see our fuel meet the high expectations with its convincing quality and performance.”

The 100 percent renewable diesel fuel is supplied locally with the brand name “C.A.R.E. Diesel” by Neste customer Tool Fuel, a company specializing in renewable fuel distribution.

“With the use of the innovative and environmentally friendly diesel, we added an important building block to our mobility concept 2020,” said Michael Eggenschwiler, CEO of Hamburg airport.

According to Neste, smaller airports in Sweden, such as Kiruna and Bromma, have already tested 100 percent renewable diesel in their ground fleet, and Oslo Gardemoen Airport can be considered the first European “biohub” in aviation after it started offering biojet fuel this past January to all airlines visiting the airport.