HONOLULU (KHON2) — Hawaiian Airlines will explore locally produced sustainable aviation fuels (SAF) with Par Hawaii, hoping to replace traditional kerosene-based jet fuel with fuel made with sustainable feedstock.

The two companies announced on Wednesday, June 8, that they will evaluate two processing units at Par Hawaii’s refinery in Kapolei that could be converted to produce renewable fuels.

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Par Hawaii is part of Par Pacific Holdings, Inc., which is Hawaii’s largest energy product supplier.

“We have over 260 employees at our Kapolei refinery engaged in high-quality manufacturing work,” said William Pate, president and CEO of Par Pacific. “We’re excited to be partnering with Hawaiian Airlines to innovate and position our business for the future.

Pate said aviation fuel represents approximately 40% of Hawaii’s fuel demand and their work with Hawaiian Airlines is an important step in addressing these emissions.

“This is the first step in what we hope will be a long and productive relationship that reflects both parties’ unwavering commitment to the environment and to these islands we call home,” said Peter Ingram, president and CEO of Hawaiian Airlines.

“SAF is an integral part of decarbonizing aviation, and we hope to be able to make joint investments in SAF production here in Hawai‘i, which will benefit both the environment and our economy,” Ingram explained.

Ingram concluded, “We know that it will take more than just our companies to accomplish this ambitious objective, and we look forward to engaging with partners across the community to build a more sustainable future for travel to, from and within the islands.”

According to Par Hawaii, in 2019, Par Pacific invested $27 million in a distillate hydrotreater at its Kapolei refinery to produce more jet fuel and ultra-low sulfur diesel.

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Par Hawaii said the new processing unit, along with the refinery’s distillate hydrocracker — which produces high-value transportation fuels by converting heavier, lower-value products under high temperature and pressure — are the two primary units being considered for renewable fuels production.