Jera, Yara explore creating clean ammonia partnership

  • : Fertilizers, Natural gas
  • 21/05/11

Japanese thermal power joint venture Jera and Norway-based fertilizer producer Yara International are planning to work together to study the possibility of producing and shipping blue and green ammonia.

Jera and Yara have signed an initial agreement to start considering co-operation on upgrading Yara's Pilbara fertilizer plant in Australia to produce blue ammonia, which would be supplied to Jera's power generation plants. The partnership would also cover development of new blue and green ammonia production projects, as well as exploration of new demand for the clean fuels in Japan. Blue ammonia is typically produced using natural gas but with carbon emissions being captured and stored or reused, while green ammonia is manufactured using hydrogen and renewable energy with no carbon emissions.

Demand for clean ammonia is expected to increase further in Japan, as the country is stepping up its efforts to achieve its net-zero emissions target by 2050. Tokyo targets 3mn t/yr of ammonia demand in 2030, mostly for power generation, before rising further to 30mn t/yr by 2050.

Jera is planning to operate an ammonia-dedicated power plant during the 2040s after realising a commercial use of the fuel by 2030. The firm's 1,000MW Hekinan No.4 and No.5 power generation units are currently having trials, co-firing coal, biomass and ammonia to generate electricity.

The deal with Yara follows Jera's agreement with Malaysian state-owned oil firm Petronas in February this year to co-operate on the development of a green ammonia and hydrogen supply chain. The companies plan to produce green ammonia and hydrogen from renewable energy sources such as hydropower.

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