Ammonia produced using renewable energy instead of natural gas is called green ammonia. Due to its applications as energy carrier or sustainable fuel source ammonia has the potential to transform the EU energy system and accelerate the energy transition. ISPT in collaboration with important partners from the industry launched the Clean Ammonia Innovation Platform to make this European ambition a reality.
The European Union is at a crossroad considering how it will transform the EU energy system to reduce the GHG emissions by 55% in 2030. The phasing out of fossil fuels requires energy reduction measures in different sectors. Ammonia can play an important role in this, because of its potential use as hydrogen carrier or alternative fuel. Ammonia is currently produced from natural gas and used mainly as a fertilizer or building block for the chemical industry.
Why Clean Ammonia?
The ammonia consumption is growing worldwide. The European Union has stated the ambition to use 20 Mt of hydrogen or ammonia in 2030. Although most ammonia is currently used to produce fertilizers, its application can be extended to sustainably transform the EU energy system.
First of all, green ammonia can become crucial to build a hydrogen economy. Hydrogen is hard to store and transport, because of the required temperature and low energy density. To the contrary, ammonia is a more ideal substance for transport, due to its three times higher energy density and less extreme temperature. Besides, there is the advantage that ammonia already has an existing infrastructure with over 120 ports having ammonia terminals. Therefore, ammonia can become the missing puzzle piece to establish a hydrogen economy within Europe.
Secondly, ammonia can be used directly as an alternative fuel for shipping or power generation. Maritime transport accounts for 3% of the world’s CO2 emissions, so shifting to ammonia can significantly impact the sustainability of this sector.
Bridging the knowledge gap and clean ammonia market
ISPT launched a platform to address challenges and explore opportunities regarding the scale-up of clean ammonia. We did this together with key actors in the field of ammonia, like the Port of Rotterdam, the Ammonia Energy Association, Horisont Energi, E.ON/ Essent, Koole Terminals, BP, Shell, Duiker Combustion Engineers, Zeta Energy Systems and Deltalinqs.
The innovation platform will facilitate knowledge exchange between companies and organizations who are participating in the innovative field of ammonia. Projects are set up that will address knowledge gaps as identified by the participants of the platform. Additionally workshops and network events will be organized. Bringing together energy producers, industry, technology providers, infrastructure operators and policymakers will enable a faster implementation of ammonia and finally allow us to implement clean ammonia in the Netherlands on a large scale.
The Clean Ammonia Innovation Platform is open for participants. Interested in joining? Please contact Carol Xiao.