The first commercial airline flights in the United States to use biofuel produced by Dynamic Fuels LLC, which is a joint venture of Tyson Foods and Syntroleum Corporation, began this week in Seattle. Alaska Airlines initiated two flights yesterday using a 20-percent blend of renewable jet fuel from Dynamic Fuels’ Geismar, Louisiana plant.

The U.S. flights follow on Dynamic Fuel’s involvement in the world’s first commercial flights using biofuel conducted earlier this year by several European airlines. The U.S. flights include a Boeing 727 Alaska Airlines flight to Washington, D.C., while the other is a Bombardier Q400 flight to Portland operated by sister airline Horizon Air.  This week’s trips are the first of 75 regularly scheduled flights Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air have scheduled in November using the biofuel blend.

Dynamic Fuels’ Geismar plant is designed to convert non-food feedstocks such as animal fats, greases, and used cooking oils into renewable fuels.  The facility has the capacity to produce up to 75 million gallons of fuel per year.  Dynamic Fuels say the fuel is chemically identical to traditional jet fuel but offers the benefits of higher energy content; better cold flow properties, enabling it to function effectively in cold weather, and reduced carbon dioxide emissions.

“The next generation of high performance biofuel technology is here and we’re hopeful others will join the efforts of Alaska Airlines and other airlines to generate more public support for biofuel production,” said Bob Ames, vice president of renewable energy for Tyson Foods and a member of the Dynamic Fuels management team.