Yara International, a global ammonia player, and Northern Lights, a CO2 transport and storage supplier, have signed a binding commercial agreement, enabling the first cross-border transportation and storage of CO2. Yara aims to reduce its annual CO2-emissions by 800,000 tonnes from the ammonia production at Yara Sluiskil.

The CO2 will be liquefied and shipped by Northern Lights from the Netherlands to permanent storage on the Norwegian continental shelf, 2.6 kilometres under the seabed.

‘This is a milestone for decarbonising hard-to-abate industry in Europe and for Yara it’s an important step towards decarbonising our ammonia production, product lines and the food value chain at large,’ says Svein Tore Holsether, CEO of Yara International.

Børre Jacobsen, managing director of Northern Lights, adds: ‘This commercial agreement gives us the opportunity to further utilise the capacity at our storage site below the North Sea. It confirms the commercial potential for CCS (carbon capture and storage, ed.) and demonstrates that the market for transport and storage of CO2 is evolving rapidly.’

Also read: Yara and NCL plan first ammonia-powered container ship

Cutting 12 million tonnes of CO2

Cutting 800,000 tons of CO2 in Yara Sluiskil corresponds to 0.5 per cent of the total annual emissions (2022) in the Netherlands. Over the next fifteen years, Yara will remove approximately 12 million tonnes of CO2 from its production in Sluiskil.

‘Since 1990 Yara Sluiskil has cut 3.4 million tonnes of CO2 equivalents per year from its ammonia and fertilizer production, whilst at the same time almost doubling its production. Now, we continue by reducing one of the biggest emission points in the Netherlands,’ states Michael Schlaug, VP Yara Netherlands.

Decarbonised future for shipping

Magnus Ankarstrand, president of Yara Clean Ammonia: ‘Clean ammonia can decarbonize hard-to-abate sectors like shipping, chemical production, and power production. It will enable the hydrogen economy, and the time to start using clean ammonia and hydrogen to decarbonize Europe is now.’

In addition to this project, Yara is evaluating potential large-scale blue ammonia production projects with CCS in the US.

Also read: First CO2 storage project in the Netherlands kicks off

Facts about the agreement

  • Yara Sluiskil will capture approximately 800,000 tons of CO2 from the process gas from its ammonia production each year.
  • Yara Sluiskil will expand its CO2 liquification capacity to liquify 12 million tonnes of CO2 over the next fifteen years with an estimated capex of approximately EUR 200 million.
  • Northern Lights will ship liquified carbon dioxide from Yara Sluiskil in the Netherlands to Øygarden in Norway
  • The liquefied CO2 will initially be stored in onshore tanks at Øygarden, prior to injection into an offshore saline aquifer via pipeline for permanent and safe storage, 2600 metres below the seabed.
  • Operations will start in 2025 and continue for fifteen years.

Picture: Northern Lights onshore pipeline with the CO2 storage tanks in the background (provided by Yara).

Also read: CO2 storage in North Sea gets green light