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Environmentalists Urge Airlines to "Ground" Dirty Fuels in NH

January 22, 2008

Manchester, NH - Don't fuel your jet with coal. That's the plea from environmentalists who are calling on 15 U.S. and Canadian airlines to ground fuels made from liquefied coal and other fuel sources they say cause major global warming pollution.

Suppliers likely are already pumping such synthetic fuels into states, including New Hampshire, but Liz Barratt-Brown, senior attorney with the Natural Resources Defense Council, says airlines need to find more environmentally friendly ways to control their soaring fuel costs.

"We want the airlines to turn to cleaner, greener alternatives such as fuel efficiency, biofuels and even algae."

Yes, algae. Last week, Virgin Airlines announced plans for a February test of a jet bio-fuel, and algae is a likely source. It's estimated the entire world's air fleet could operate on fuel from algae grown on farms covering 35 square kilometers.

Barratt-Brown says while there's not a lot of coal mining in the Granite State, fuels made from dirty sources such as coal and tar sands probably are already here.

"They come by pipeline through the Midwest and then up into New England, so it's very likely there is some use in home heating oil and probably in transportation fuel in that part of the country."

More information is on the web at

John Robinson/Eric Mack, Public News Service - NH