Daily CSR
Daily CSR

Daily CSR
Daily news about corporate social responsibility, ethics and sustainability

American Airlines makes strategic equity investment in Universal Hydrogen Co


Green hydrogen has the potential to be a game changer in the aviation industry’s pathway to net zero GHG emissions by 2050.

American Airlines recently announced a strategic equity investment in Universal Hydrogen Co., which is developing a green hydrogen distribution and logistics network for the aviation industry.

The investment supports the United States' science-based targets to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2035, with the ultimate goal of achieving net zero GHG emissions by 2050. With this investment, American becomes the first airline in the United States to make two direct investments in the development of both hydrogen-electric propulsion technology and the future of hydrogen distribution logistics.

The fuel distribution network of Universal Hydrogen uses modular hydrogen capsules that are handled like cargo, eliminating the need for new fueling infrastructure at airports and speeding up fuel loading operations. Universal Hydrogen expects to begin delivering hydrogen to regional aircraft in 2025, with plans to expand to larger, single aisle aircraft — first for auxiliary power in the late 2020s, then as a primary fuel by the mid-2030s. Because these segments account for two-thirds of aviation emissions, and green hydrogen is a true zero-carbon fuel, these advancements put aviation on track to meet Paris Agreement emissions targets.

“This technology has the potential to be a game-changer on the industry’s path to zero-emission flight,” said American’s Chief Financial Officer Derek Kerr. “As the world’s largest airline, American has a responsibility to exercise leadership in making aviation sustainable. Our investment in Universal Hydrogen represents a vote of confidence for green hydrogen as a key element of a sustainable future for our industry.”

The development marks American joining its peers including Airbus Ventures, GE Aviation and Toyota Ventures, along with several major hydrogen producers and aircraft lessors, as strategic investors in Universal Hydrogen.

“Together with our investors, we are putting together the end-to-end value chain to make hydrogen aviation a near-term commercial reality,” said Paul Eremenko, co-founder and CEO of Universal Hydrogen. “This move by American is a strong signal that customers want a true zero-emissions solution for passenger aviation and are willing to back tangible, pragmatic steps to get there quickly.”