Danish consortium accelerates offshore wind-powered clean fuel project, eyes green jet fuel production by 2025
The partnership behind the Power-to-X project ‘Green Fuels for Denmark’ has decided to bring forward parts of the project two years earlier than previously planned. The new plan involves rolling out 100 MW of the project’s originally planned second phase’s 250 MW electrolysis in 2025 instead of 2027, as well as starting capturing sustainable carbon dioxide in 2025.
The accelerated phase of 100 MW can produce more than 50,000 tonnes of sustainable fuels in 2025, mainly e-methanol for shipping, but prompted by the Danish Government’s ambition to establish green aviation opportunities in Denmark as early as 2025, the partnership will examine whether parts of the expected production of green aviation fuels in the ‘Green Fuels for Denmark’ project can also be brought forward to 2025, the partners said in a press release on 4 February.
The project is led by a partnership consisting of Ørsted, SAS, Copenhagen Airports, A.P. Moller – Maersk, DFDS and DSV, with Nel, Haldor Topsøe and Everfuel being the partners in the first phase and in the development of the second phase. COWI, which recently announced it was no longer taking on fossil fuel projects, is a knowledge partner on the ‘Green Fuels for Denmark’ project.
The initial plan was to commission an electrolysis plant with a capacity of approximately 10 MW in 2023 and subsequently 250 MW in 2027 and 1,300 MW by 2030. The partnership said it still planned to expand the full second phase to 250 MW by 2027, but will roll out 100 MW of the phase two years earlier.
The second phase will be able to supply enough jet fuel to cover significantly more than the expected Danish domestic consumption of jet fuel – three years ahead of schedule for the government’s goal of 100 per cent green domestic aviation by 2030 – and thus also contribute to the conversion of international aviation from Denmark, provided that the necessary framework is established.
At the same time, the realisation of the full second phase depends on the availability of sufficient amounts of new green power, e.g. from offshore wind.
Green Fuels for Denmark’s final phase of 1,300 MW will be able to supply green fuels, primarily jet fuel, that can replace approximately 30 per cent of the total fuel consumption at Copenhagen Airport, which will entail a significant green conversion of international air traffic in addition to domestic air travel, the partners said.
The fulfilment of the Danish 2025 ambition, as well as the 2030 ambition requires the establishment of a regulatory framework that makes green jet fuel a real and competitive alternative to fossil fuels. Chemically, there are several ways to produce aviation fuels from hydrogen and sustainable carbon dioxide, and the partnership will explore the various technological possibilities, the partnering companies said.
“Denmark has a unique opportunity to create an industrial success story within green fuels for heavy transport. The Danish Parliament and Government have created a very good framework to realise this huge potential through their ambitious goals for the build-out of offshore wind and the construction of Power-to-X facilities”, said Mads Nipper, Group President and CEO of Ørsted.
“The Danish Prime Minister’s recent announcement of the ambition to accelerate the green transformation of aviation has directly made us in the partnership look for a way to enable the production of green jet fuel as early as 2025. It will be a technological challenge that we in Green Fuels for Denmark are ready to answer, so that we can secure Denmark’s position as a green leader in the coming decades and push for a green breakthrough for the global transformation of the aviation industry”.
Currently, there is no significant consumption of sustainable aviation fuel produced through Power-to-X, either in Denmark or internationally, according to the ‘Green Fuels for Denmark’ partners, who said the country has a unique opportunity to create an international leadership position. Still, the technology for producing the fuels still needs to be matured significantly, just as new aviation fuels must go through a thorough and extensive approval process before they can be used in aviation, the partnership pointed out.