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SAF Program Assurance (SPA) Audit

An increasing number of airlines around the globe are launching their Sustainable Aviation Fuels (SAF) programs allowing their corporate customers to purchase SAF (or SAFc) and reduce the environmental impact of their staff travel (GHG scope 3 emissions). SAF Program Assurance (SPA) audit is a process through which Verifavia ensures the credibility and robustness of an airline's SAF program.

 

The main objective of an airline’s SAF Program is to allow its corporate customers to purchase SAF through the airline. Corporate customers participating in the purchase of SAF by the airline demonstrate their commitment to sustainable travel and potentially offset their Scope 3 emissions. SAF certificates are provided by the airline as a deliverable to allow their corporate customers to claim Scope 3 emissions reductions 









We acknowledge the rapid developments in the SAF Program's legislature & SAFc framework, and services required today may slightly differ from what will be most suited in a few months. Consequently, we continuously adapt our offers and services to satisfy at best the requirement of pioneering companies that have engaged in this promising and nevertheless challenging area of activity.

The objectives of a SAF Program Assurance (SPA) audit are as follows:
  1. Provide assurance that the emissions reductions from the SAF sold are not used anywhere else but in the airline's Scope 1 carbon footprint reporting (with exception of the corporate customer's Scope 3 reporting, if applicable).
  2. Ensure that the SAF emission reductions are calculated according to chosen emissions reductions methodology by the airline (i.e. CORSIA or SBTi, since an emissions reductions policy is yet to be standardized by the GHG Protocol), and that they are claimed only once (no double counting / no selling of same SAF to several corporate clients).
A typical SPA audit process is presented below:

Phase I (yearly SAF program audit) –
 
  • Interview with key personnel to review the steps of the complete value chain, i.e., from the purchase of Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) to the issuance of SAF Certificates by the airline (purchases of SAF from various producers -> estimation of emissions reductions -> issuance of SAF Certificates to a corporate customer for its third-party Scope 3 emissions reductions claim
  • Audit & analysis of tools, calculators, procedures, assumptions and methods used by the Airline to estimate emissions reductions (input data / processes / output)
  • Review of the accounting framework (inventory or registry) established by the Airline to ensure accurate tracking of SAF purchases and the issuance of SAF Certificates
  • Evaluation of eligibility criteria and standards associated with the procurement of SAF established by the Airline for its SAF Program
  • Review of the SAF Program Policy/Framework which describes the functioning of the SAF Program
  • Evaluation of the integrity of the claims specified in the proposed SAF Certificate template

Note: Currently because of the lack of any strict legislative requirement our Phase I audit is typically based on the guidance available from various sources including the World Economic Forum and Science Based Targets Initiative. We encourage all our clients to structure their SAF Program in accordance with these guidance documents as we anticipate the legislative requirements to be based on the foundation of the information provided in these documents.

Deliverable for Phase I: SAF Program Assurance Statement (authenticity and integrity can be checked online via the Keeex blockchain mechanism) which preliminarily confirms the following:
 
  • The SAF Certificates meet the eligibility criteria and standards associated with the procurement of SAF established by the Airline
  • The data sources for the calculation of emissions reductions obligations of a corporate customer meet the criteria and conditions as described in the SAF Program Policy/Framework
  • The SAF Certificates can be only sold once as per the procedures and controls established in the SAF Program Policy/Framework
  • The calculation methodologies implemented in the SAF Program are accurate and are supported by sufficient evidence
  • Every SAF Certificate issued by the Airline can be tracked to a SAF purchase through the accounting framework established by the Airline

Phase II (verification of individual SAF Certificates) –
 
  • Review of all SAF invoices & proof of sustainability documentation received by the Airline to confirm the SAF’s eligibility for Scope 3 emissions reductions, the number of emissions reductions available to date, and their transformation into SAF Certificates
  • Continuous review of all SAF Certificates issued by the Airline and confirmation that there is no double-counting.
Deliverable for Phase II: SAF Program Assurance Certificate (authenticity and integrity can be checked online via the Keeex blockchain mechanism) attached to each SAF Certificate issued by the Airline which confirms the following:.
 
  • The emissions reductions from the sold SAF Certificates are not claimed anywhere else but in the Airline’s Scope 1 reporting
  • The emissions reductions calculation for this transaction has been reviewed before the issuance of the SAF Certificate
  • The claims specified in the SAF Certificate are accurate and in line with the SAF Program Policy/Framework established by the Airline
  • Every SAF Certificate issued by the Airline to date can be tracked to a SAF purchase
We are already providing SPA Audit services to CARGOLUX, FINNAIR, VIRGIN ATLANTIC, and 4AIR.




Please contact us to learn more.

Read about SAF Programs recently launched:

Finnair
Cargolux
JetBlue Norwegian
> DHL
Delta Cargo