The maritime transportation sector currently accounts for about 3% of the world's greenhouse gas emissions and the industry must be decarbonised if the climate goals are to be achieved. Ammonia is currently regarded by leading players in the industry as the future zero-emission fuel for ships, and the project will be a key factor to enable a large-scale shift to zero-carbon fuel for ships.
The background for the project is that there is an existing global infrastructure for production and distribution of ammonia, there are large projects in progress to decarbonize the production and several ship projects have started that aim to use ammonia as fuel. The main problem to be solved is the lack of the necessary ammonia bunkering technology and a bunkering network in the ports.
Today's bulk terminal infrastructure for ammonia is an excellent starting point as regional distribution hubs, but these are not adapted for bunkering and are largely not located correctly to support the need for bunkering of ships. ECONNECT Energy and Amon Maritime joined forces to solve this problem and have built a consortium of players covering the entire value chain from production, via transport and storage, to consumption on board ammonia-powered ships. The project will be the first in the world to pilot ammonia bunkering - and will take the first step to enable the shift to zero-carbon fuel for ships.
During the project, project partners will develop and build an innovative, flexible and scalable bunkering terminal that will be piloted in a Norwegian port. The entire value chain for ammonia as a fuel will be studied and optimized to maximize efficiency and minimize costs and remove significant barriers to the implementation of zero-emission fuel in the shipping industry. While being an excellent zero-carbon fuel, ammonia has high toxicity and corrosivity. Therefore, special focus will be put on studying risks, safety, procedures and developing safety measures.
The project consortium partners aim to develop and demonstrate an ammonia fuel bunkering network for ships, enabling cost-efficient and safe distribution, storage, transfer and utilization of ammonia as a zero-carbon fuel. Maritime industry thought leaders like DNV view ammonia as the most promising carbon-free ship fuel for the future. If successful, the project will be the first in the world to pilot ammonia bunkering operations – taking the first step to enable a large-scale shift to zero-carbon fuel for ships. From a starting point of about 1 billion tons of CO2 emissions from use of hydrocarbon fuels in the maritime industry today, the potential ripple effects of providing the first proof of concept are vast.
An innovative, flexible, modular and scalable bunkering hub will be developed and piloted in a Norwegian port. The entire ammonia fuel value chain from production to consumption will be studied, optimized and integrated in order to maximize efficiency and minimize costs, removing a significant barrier for zero-carbon fuel adoption. While being an excellent zero-carbon fuel, ammonia has high toxicity and corrosivity. Therefore, special focus will be put on studying risks and developing safety measures.