The Sustainable Aviation Project is a public-private collaboration to reduce the cost of flight training through the use of all-electric general aviation airplanes.  Our partners include the City of Reedley, City of Mendota, Reedley College, a local flying service, the Fresno Business Council, and the CALSTART San Joaquin Valley Clean Transportation Center.


The initial spark for the idea came to Joseph Oldham while nurturing relationships between businesses and government to get zero-emission buses into public transit fleets.  A pilot for over 40 years, Oldham approached Richard Duncan, manager of Fresno Chandler Executive Airport, and together they began brainstorming how a network of chargers located up and down the San Joaquin Valley could support the operation of a small fleet of Pipistrel Alpha Electro aircraft for flight training operations. More conversations with other interested parties, long nights writing grant proposals, presentations to various city boards and government groups, and the Sustainable Aviation Project was born!


We are using modern, all-electric, composite aircraft designed and built by Pipistrel

Pipistrel Alpha Electro: link

AOPA review of Alpha Electro: link


PBS’s NOVA showcased us May 26, 2021 (jump to 11:58): link

ABC news loved our Apr 17, 2018 public unveiling of our four Pipistrel Alpha Electro all-electric airplanes: link

The Fresno Bee coverage of the unveiling: link

AOPA article on the arrival of the four Pipistrel Alpha Electros: link

AVweb is excited about our electric airplanes: link

CAFE Foundation‘s coverage of our airplanes’ arrival: link

Aviation International News article sharing the arrival news: link

AOPA‘s first article about the project: link

Check out the videos from our first takeoff and flight from KFCH!
first takeoff Fri, Mar 23, 2018: video
first flight Fri, Mar 23, 2018: video

More videos at our YouTube site: link


See us on PBS Nova!

Oof. It’s been a trying 18 months. No new news re the FAA petition, however PBS Nova ran a super interesting story about electric aviation called “The Great Electric Airplane Race” and Joseph and the SAP effort is featured! Check it out: https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/video/great-electric-airplane-race/ (if you’re short on time, jump to 11:58)

Petition public comment period

12-8-2019 Well, we have finally made it to the public comment period starting point for our petition for exemption!!!  The link below provides a notice that the petition will be posted to the Federal Register tomorrow, 12/9/2019. https://s3.amazonaws.com/public-inspection.federalregister.gov/2019-26468.pdf It also contains information about where and how to post the comments and the deadline for submitting …

Planned Locations

City of Mendota’s William Robert Johnston Municipal Airport (M90)

Fresno Chandler Executive Airport (KFCH)

Reedley Municipal Airport (O32)

Fourth location = TBD