Gasunie, HES, Vopak to develop green ammonia terminal in Rotterdam
Gasunie, HES International (HES), and Vopak have joined forces to develop an import terminal for green ammonia as a hydrogen carrier in the Port of Rotterdam.
The parties have signed a cooperation agreement to that effect.
Their cooperation is a response to the growing global demand for the import and storage of green energy. An import terminal for green ammonia will make a major contribution to the import of hydrogen. This is an essential link in the hydrogen chain, alongside hydrogen production, transport, and storage.
Moreover, a reliable logistic chain is essential for developing the market for green hydrogen and for achieving the climate goals for 2030 and 2050.
This quarter, the companies will start working on the basic design of the import terminal. The terminal, which will operate under the name ACE Terminal, will come online in 2026.
At the location on Maasvlakte, Rotterdam, vessels can moor to discharge green ammonia, and in the initial phase possibly also blue ammonia. Use can be made of the existing infrastructure and facilities of the Port of Rotterdam. The site also offers space for the development of an installation for converting ammonia into hydrogen.
In the future, this installation will be connected to the national hydrogen network of Gasunie, which can serve the future hydrogen market in Northwestern Europe.
Ammonia as hydrogen carrier
In addition to the production of green hydrogen in the Netherlands, there will also be demand in Northwestern Europe for the large-scale import of green hydrogen, in order to meet future demand.
Green ammonia as a hydrogen carrier will play a vital role, the companies say. Reacting green hydrogen with nitrogen forms green ammonia, allowing the hydrogen to be efficiently and safely transported in large volumes. It can then be stored and converted again to green hydrogen.
Green ammonia is also immediately usable as CO2-free fuel for example for shipping or as a raw material.
On the Maasvlakte, HES operates a strategic location with quayside capacity and direct access from the sea. Gasunie has at this location infrastructure of existing storage tanks and a system of pipelines. Vopak, with six ammonia terminals around the world, has experience in the safe storage of the fuel.
The eventual investment decision is still pending. It will be based among others on customer contracts and the necessary permits, including the EIA procedure.
The service proposition will entail an independent open-access terminal infrastructure, in which the partners will not own the green ammonia.
The parties will soon launch a market consultation procedure, in which interested parties can announce their interest in the supply, storage, and transshipment of green ammonia and hydrogen.