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    Dutch firm joins UAE blue ammonia plan

Summary

OCI sees huge potential for ammonia as a hydrogen carrier, in fertiliser production and downstream industrial uses, and as a shipping fuel.

by: Joseph Murphy

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Dutch firm joins UAE blue ammonia plan

Dutch fertiliser producer OCI has joined a world-scale blue ammonia production project at Ruwais in UAE through its Fertiglobe joint venture with Abu Dhabi National Oil Co (ADNOC), it said on June 22.

Fertiglobe has signed an agreement on participation with the project's developer TA'ZIZ, a joint venture between ADNOC and Abu Dhabi Developing Holding (ADQ).

The planned facility will produce up to 1mn metric tons/year of blue ammonia from nitrogen and blue hydrogen, derived from natural gas. CO2 emitted during the hydrogen's production will be captured and stored.

The partner will undertake engineering design studies ahead of taking a final investment decision in 2022, OCI said. The plant is due to come online in 2025.

OCI CEO Nassef Sawiris said the partnership "fits well in our strategy to decarbonise our global and regional platforms. It helps grow our low carbon and clean fuels product offering, which includes our fast-growing biofuels business." The agreement comes after OCI recently unveiled plans for a 365,000 mt/yr blue ammonia project in Texas.

Ammonia, Sawiris said, offers "huge potential" as the world shifts to cleaner energy, and will serve as an enabler of the hydrogen economy.

"Ammonia is a versatile and clean hydrogen carrier, with many exciting fuel applications, in addition to a diverse array of fertiliser and downstream industrial uses," he continued. "The use of ammonia as a shipping fuel is particularly promising as it is, together with methanol, the only practical alternative for long-distance shipping to decarbonise in a cost-effective way."