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Yara opens renewable hydrogen plant to produce low carbon fertilisers

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A renewable hydrogen plant has been built by Yara International in Herøya, Norway, which has already delivered the first tonnes of low carbon fertilisers.

Inaugurated by the Norwegian Prime Minister Mr. Jonas Gahr Støre, the 24MW plant is reportedly the largest of its kind in Europe. The hydrogen, produced via the electrolysis of water and renewable energy, will replace natural gas as feedstock for ammonia, annually cutting 41,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions from the site.

Currently 80% of the ammonia produced globally is used in farming via fertilisers. This ‘brown’ ammonia is made using fossil fuels (normally natural gas) as a feedstock. Green ammonia production makes use of renewable energy sources such as hydro-electric, solar power or wind turbines, minimising its’ environmental impact. Green ammonia is also seen as a very promising, carbon-neutral energy carrier and can be used as a fuel in industries such as shipping.

Skrei Tour Jonas Gahr Støre Svein Tore Holsether open Yara hydrogen plant

Yara CEO Svein Tore Holsether (pictured above right with PM Jonas Gahr Støre) said:

“This is a ground-breaking project and a testament to our mission to responsibly feed the world and protect the planet. I want to thank our dedicated employees who have worked tirelessly to get this cutting-edge production up and running, Enova for supporting the project, our partners and our brave customers who are first movers towards a more sustainable future.

“We are very pleased to have delivered the first tonnes of low-carbon footprint fertilizers to Lantmännen, a partnership which serves as a concrete example of how collaboration across the entire food value chain is required to decarbonize. Together, we have made this important step towards decarbonizing hard to abate sectors.”

The production of low-carbon fertilisers is part of a new portfolio called Yara Climate Choice, benefitting crops while at the same time contributing to decarbonizing the food value chain and reducing climate impact. In addition to fertilizers produced with electrolysis of water and renewable energy, fertilisers based on low-carbon ammonia produced using carbon capture storage (CCS) will be a large part of Yara’s portfolio going forward.

In 2023, Yara signed a binding CO2 transport and storage agreement with Northern Lights, the world’s first cross-border CCS agreement in operation, and is aiming to reduce its annual CO2-emissions by 800,000 tons from the ammonia production at Yara Sluiskil.

The company is reportedly evaluating one to two additional world-scale low-carbon ammonia production projects with CCS in the US.


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