EgyptAir recently operated its first commercial flight powered by sustainable aviation fuel (SAF). On November 5th, 2022, the Boeing 787-9 departed Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport (CDG), bound for Sharm El Sheikh Airport (SSH) in Egypt.

Flight MS800 is a daily scheduled flight from Paris CDG to Cairo International Airport (CAI). However, on this occasion, it flew to Sharm El Sheikh instead. Rather fittingly, the flight was transporting delegates to the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP27), which is currently being held in the Red Sea resort city.

After a flight time of four hours and 11 minutes, the aircraft was met on arrival with a water cannon salute. EgyptAir celebrated the flight, saying,

“A commercial flight of the Boeing B787-9 Dreamliner is operating today with sustainable biofuels from Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris directly to Sharm El Sheikh Airport, carrying passengers participating in the COP27 climate conference in accordance with the goals of the United Nations in the field of sustainable development.”

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EgyptAir CDG to SSH

EgyptAir and the Boeing 787-9

Flight MS800 was operated by one of EgyptAir’s six Boeing 787-9s, with the registration SU-GEV. The aircraft was delivered new to the carrier in July 2019.

Each of the airline’s Boeing 787-9 seats a total of 309 passengers in a two-class configuration – 30 in business class and 279 in economy class. EgyptAir also has a further two Boeing 787-9s on order.

Although the flight from Paris to Sharm El Sheikh was EgyptAir’s first commercial service operated with SAF, the airline broke the record for the longest delivery flight using SAF back in July 2019, when one of its Boeing 787-9 aircraft was flown from Seattle to Cairo – a distance of 5,925 nautical miles (10,973 km).

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EgyptAir Boeing 787-9 landing

Sustainability – an area of focus

As with many airlines worldwide, sustainability is a priority for EgyptAir, and in recent years the airline has overhauled its fleet to include modern, fuel-efficient Airbus A220s, Airbus A320neos, Airbus A321neos, and Boeing 787-9s.

Sustainable aviation fuel can reduce carbon emissions by up to 80%, and its use plays a vital role in the aviation industry’s mission to reach net-zero carbon emissions. EgyptAir is not the only carrier to use COP27 to highlight its sustainability achievements – Etihad Airways has also been transporting delegates from its hub at Abu Dhabi International Airport (AUH) to COP27 using SAF-powered flights.

Etihad Boeing 787-9 Greenliner on apron

Photo: Etihad Airways

The eyes of the world are currently focused on Egypt – the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP27) is being held in Red Sea resort city of Sharm El Sheikh, from November 6th through November 18th. The event brings together more than 100 heads of state from around the world to tackle the ongoing climate crisis.

What do you think of EgyptAir’s first commercial flight using sustainable aviation fuel? Is it a sign of more positive changes on the horizon? Will the focus continue once the publicity around COP27 dies down? Share your thoughts by commenting below.


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