By 2030, FedEx plans to obtain 30 percent of its fuel from biodiesel, ethanol and other second-generation biofuels.
The biodiesel would be derived from jatropha and the ethanol from switchgrass, said Fred Smith, CEO of FedEx, during remarks at a U.S. Chamber of Commerce avaiation forum, according to an article posted at the New York Times Web site.
Smith called it a “30 by 30” initiative, adding that the benefits to the aforementioned types of biofuel is that they do not rely on edibile feedstocks, and for the most part they can be cultivated on marginal land.
FedEx had previously said it wants to cut its emissions 20 percent by 2020. At the time, the company started replacing Boeing 727 aircraft with Boeing 757 planes, which reduce fuel consumption up to 36 percent while providing 20 percent more payload capacity.
Smith has been a vocal leader for reducing America’s reliance on fossil fuels, saying that doing so is one key to reducing the terrorist threat.
FedEx competitor UPS has also taken steps to reduce its carbon footprint. It has been awarded about $470,000 by the EPA’s Diesel Emissions Reduction National Program. The grant will fund two projects to reduce particulate matter: the replacement of diesel engines in ground support cargo tugs and the extension of ground electricity to parked aircraft.