BP sees potential for green hydrogen and ammonia plant in Australia

MELBOURNE, Aug.11 (Reuters) – The production of green hydrogen and green ammonia is technically feasible on a large scale in Australia, but will require a major investment in port, electricity and water services, BP said on Wednesday , based on the findings of a study.

The study, supported by the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA), examined the construction of a demonstration plant and a 1 million tonne per year facility, with an electrolyser powered by energy renewable to split the water to produce hydrogen, which would be used to make ammonia green.

Australia, the world’s largest exporter of coal and second-largest exporter of liquefied natural gas, is keen to develop green hydrogen to replace fossil fuels as part of a global campaign to reduce carbon emissions.

BP, which plans to spend $ 5 billion a year on low-carbon investments, has found the west-central region of Western Australia to be a particularly promising location for large-scale green hydrogen production, because it has wide access to land and abundant wind and sunshine.

“It is important to note that our study also confirmed the strong demand from potential customers in sectors that are difficult to reduce, and for local and export markets,” BP Australia President Frédéric Baudry said in a statement. .

“This has the potential to position Australia as a regional powerhouse in the energy transition,” Baudry said.

Sectors that are difficult to reduce include the steel industry and long-haul transport.

The study, carried out by engineering firm GHD, found that the development of a hydrogen industry would depend on government support, including construction of transmission lines, expansion of ports, supply of ‘incentives and the setting of emission targets.

“The lack of a carbon price or an emissions cap is a key barrier to attracting investment in renewable technologies such as hydrogen,” GHD said.

The Australian government has refused to put a price on carbon or commit to net zero emissions by 2050.

GHD did not provide any cost estimate for a commercial scale plant.

BP said it would work with others to develop plans for green hydrogen projects in Western Australia.

Separately, Australia’s Origin Energy (ORG.AX) and Japan’s Mitsui OSK Lines (9104.T) have announced that they will jointly study how Australia’s green ammonia projects could supply markets from 2026.

($ 1 = 1.3628 Australian dollars)

Reporting by Sonali Paul; Editing by Amy Caren Daniel

Our standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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