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Build & Sustainability

Major jobs boost as Alfanar Group reveals £1 billion Teesside fuel project

A global energy firm is set to create nearly 250 jobs in a “ground-breaking” £1 billion Teesside development.

Saudi Arabia’s Alfanar Group is investing in the Lighthouse Green Fuels Project, which it says will make it the first company to create sustainable aviation fuel from waste at scale in the UK.

Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen last night [Tuesday, March 15] hailed the announcement, saying it was proof the area is now the “go-to place to develop ground-breaking green energy technology”.

He added it also holds great potential to make Teesside International Airport the UK’s first hydrogen-ready aviation hub.

Under its plans, Alfanar says it will create 240 full-time jobs at a new factory, and support more than 700 construction posts.

Building work is expected to begin next year.

Alfanar, which was previously awarded more than £2 million by the Government through the Green Fuels, Green Skies competition, says its fuel has the potential to produce 80 per cent less greenhouse gas emissions than fossil fuels. 

It says it plant will convert household and commercial waste into 180 million litres of aviation fuel and liquid hydrocarbon naptha.

Mayor Houchen [pictured above] said: “This absolutely fantastic news further cements our region as the global go-to place to develop ground-breaking green energy technology – delivering the cleaner, safer and healthier jobs of the future.

“Alfanar’s commitment to the region and its workers is fantastic to see, with hundreds of high-quality, well-paid jobs set to come as it plays its part in helping us become a clean energy powerhouse.”

And Mayor Houchen – who fulfilled a 2017 election pledge when returning Teesside International Airport into public ownership – said Alfanar will make a major difference to emissions on its apron and runway.

He added: “Its plans ties in with our ambitions to make the airport the UK’s first hydrogen-ready airport, and an early adopter of these sustainable aviation fuels.

“Hydrogen-powered vehicles and a refuelling station are on the ground now and projects right across our area from the likes of BP, Kellas Midstream and Northern Gas Networks are showing how we’re capitalising on the UK’s low-carbon ambitions. 

“Critically, at a point where we need to be thinking outside of the box to cut down on tradition jet fuel emissions to keep our aviation sector soaring, this investment and innovative project will help us become a pioneer in the aviation fuels of the future.”