In the summer (2023), the IMO tightened its climate targets: By 2050, international shipping must be carbon neutral. If the targets are to be met, carbon-neutral fuel alternatives must therefore be available where ships refuel.
Ammonia has some properties that make it suitable for ships with greater energy requirements, ships traveling longer distances and ships that aim to reduce their CO2 emissions.
In the Stavanger region, there is considerable activity in offshore shipping. Sailing to and from, as well as operations at the many installations in the North Sea generate a lot of traffic.
In order for offshore vessels to be able to sail with low or, preferably, zero emissions, important players such as Equinor and Aker BP will be dependent on access to ammonia. Bunkering must also be made as safe and efficient as possible
Several of the major engine manufacturers are expected to be able to offer ammonia-fuelled engines in the near future.
The main barrier today is the lack of bunkering infrastructure.
Goal of the pilot
This pilot study will map how ammonia can be utilised by the Norwegian offshore fleet in the Stavanger region.
The first step will be to describe the necessary infrastructure and bunkering solution conceptually while identifying relevant key players for all parts of the value chain in the Stavanger area.
Then – in the same area – we will map:
- The need for ammonia and hydrogen for maritime and other industries
- Production capacity for ammonia and hydrogen
- Operational limitations and preferences for offshore vessels and other ships
- Current regulations with regard to safety
The pilot study will evaluate different alternatives for supplying/bunkering ammonia to offshore and other ships, both in terms of safety and total costs. Furthermore, an efficient and sustainable business model will be developed throughout the value chain and, before the pilot is completed, the necessary steps will be taken to realise the solutions agreed by the pilot participants.
The pilot study will also investigate and prepare:
- Financing opportunities and public support opportunities
- A concrete realisation plan
- A communication plan for visualising opportunities and results
Final goal of the pilot
Establish a cost-effective infrastructure for carbon-neutral ammonia for ships in the Stavanger region.
Equinor and Aker BP currently bunker from separate bases for their offshore vessels in the Stavanger area. The companies are open to working together to find a bunkering alternative that both can utilize.
Yara is the pilot owner and will lead the work. The company holds a unique position in the production, transport and handling of ammonia.
Yara produces about 5 million tonnes of ammonia (2023), which represents about a quarter of the world’s total ammonia exports.
In addition, Yara is already in the process of building a Nordic bunkering network consisting of 15 bunkering bays for ammonia together with NorSea and Azane Fuel Solutions. According to existing progress plans, the first barge will be operational in Norway in 2025.
The implementation of the pilot’s startup meeting will be in October 2023.