Boeing to Keynote South by Southwest Eco Conference

Boeing Environmental Strategy Director Julie Felgar and Masdar Institute Bioenergy Research Director Alejandro Rios G. to discuss breakthrough research in sustainable biofuel for commercial aviation
Jul 30, 2014 12:30 PM ET

Julie Felgar, Managing Director of Environmental Strategy and Integration, Boeing Commercial Airplanes, and Alejandro Rios G., Director of the Sustainable Bioenergy Research Consortium (SBRC) at the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology in Abu Dhabi will lead a dual keynote session at South by Southwest Eco (SXSW Eco), a conference connecting the urgency of global sustainability challenges with the opportunity for breakthrough solutions.

Felgar and Rios will share insights on progress towards development of sustainable jet fuel, which reduces carbon emissions by 50 to 80 percent compared to petroleum-based fuel through its lifecycle. They will address breakthrough research at SBRC in the United Arab Emirates on the use of halophytes, desert plants that can be irrigated with seawater, as a biofuel feedstock. Enabling local food security, socio-economic development and responsible use of land and fresh water, SBRC's research has positive implications for potential production of sustainable bioenergy crops in coastal deserts in several countries.

Julie Felgar, leads the team responsible for identifying ways to improve the environmental performance of Boeing products and services and the commercial aviation industry. Working with stakeholders around the world, Felgar is responsible for ensuring Commercial Airplanes has an integrated environmental strategy and a coordinated approach to environmental policy advocacy, biofuel commercialization and marketing. She also works closely with Boeing's product development team to incorporate the company's Design for Environment philosophy into future commercial products.

About SXSW Eco
SXSW Eco, which last year drew over 2,800 attendees from around the world, brings together a diverse community of innovators in the areas of technology, smart cities, business, design, energy, food systems, land and water, policy and more. The three-day event, now in its fourth year, will take place October 6-8, 2014 at the Austin Convention Center in Austin, TX.  For the 2014 conference, SXSW Eco has also announced the next installment of 27 sessions, including: "How Everyday Chemicals are Killing us," a conversation with actor Evan Handler (Sex and the City, Californication), and Michael Green from the Center for Environmental Health. Additional session topics will include "Activating Digital Communities to Drive Change" (Blue State Digital, Rockefeller Foundation/100 Resilient Cities, Sierra Club) and "How Tech is Catalyzing Conservation Innovation" (World Wildlife Fund).  

Learn more about SXSW Eco visit