“It's a very short amount of time to create a brand new industry. At the same time we're cautious about the steps we take and how we get there – it's not a sprint.”
Midwest: The Leader in Aviation Biofuel Development?
Players in the Midwest are working to ensure that the region is a leading player in the development of aviation biofuels, fuels that are derived from renewable resources such as crops, agricultural waste, trees, algae, sewage, and solid waste. Supporters of this biofuel development say that this form of aviation fuel produces much less carbon dioxide and other harmful emissions than do other fuels and that it is also more politically sound than are petroleum-based fuels. Made up of players in this blossoming industry, the Midwest Aviation Sustainable Biofuels Initiative (MASBI) has brought together the Chicago business incubator Clean Energy Trust, airline companies, and the Chicago Department of Aviation. MASBI believes that the Midwest is especially suited to be a leader in this industry due to the shear amount of physical space it has along with its agricultural waste, number of workers, and infrastructure. Industry experts believe that central and northern Illinois is especially well-suited to become the hub for the nation's aviation biofuel industry. Meanwhile, the airlines are in it for the long haul. Speaking about just that, United Airlines global sustainability director Jimmy Samartzis, said: