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Canadian fertiliser company Nutrien and Belgian Exmar have signed a collaboration agreement to jointly develop and build a low-carbon, ammonia-fuelled vessel which could be deployed as early as 2025.

Nutrien has actively been pursuing the development of low-carbon ammonia for more than a decade, and has approximately 1 million tonnes of production capability through its Redwater and Joffre Alberta operations, as well as its Geismar, Louisiana facility which employs carbon capture and sequestration technology to reduce the carbon intensity of its ammonia for use as a maritime fuel.

‘Nutrien is excited to partner with EXMAR on our shared journey to drive transformative reductions in maritime emissions,’ said Raef Sully, Nutrien’s Executive Vice President and CEO of Nitrogen and Phosphate. ‘This initiative demonstrates how we are taking action to achieve our Feeding the Future Plan’s 2030 sustainability commitments, which include investing in low-carbon ammonia innovations.’

Compared to conventional fuels, it is anticipated that the use of Nutrien’s existing low-carbon ammonia will achieve a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions of up to 40%. Moreover, the companies say emissions reductions of up to 70% can be achieved with the development of low-carbon ammonia using proven, scalable, best available technology and permanent sequestration of CO2.

‘EXMAR has always strived to contribute to innovations and increase efficiencies in gas logistics and transportation,’ said Jens Ismar, Executive Director Shipping. ‘The development of an ammonia-fuelled vessel together with our long-standing partner Nutrien is an exciting and logical next step for us.’

Under the Collaboration Agreement, Nutrien and EXMAR will, amongst others, collaborate on selecting an ammonia engine and supply system manufacturer; selecting a shipyard capable of building an ammonia-powered vessel; and using Nutrien’s existing low-carbon ammonia supply from Geismar, LA as a fuel.

As previously reported, earlier this year, Exmar secured Approval in Principle (AiP) from Lloyd’s Register (LR) for an ammonia-fuelled 40,000 cbm-capacity Midsize Gas Carrier (MGC) design.



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