Thenamaris delivers blue-ammonia cargo to China

Athens-based ship manager Thenamaris LNG has delivered the first certified blue ammonia cargo to China.

The delivery comes on the back of the first certified blue ammonia cargo to Korea in December 2022, showcasing the growing importance of ammonia as part of the global decarbonization efforts.

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The cargo was transported aboard the LPG carrier SEATEAM, which departed from Ras Al-Khair, Saudi Arabia on May 22 heading for Lianyungang, China.

Ras Al-Khair is home to one of the world’s largest ammonia production facilities. The facility is operated by the Saudi Arabian Mining Company (Ma’aden) in collaboration with Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC).

Earlier this year, SABIC AN and Aramco received certification from Germany-based certification agency TÜV Rheinland for the production of blue ammonia and blue hydrogen.

The 2022-built midsize LPG carrier, with a 38,000 cbm carrying capacity, is part of a fleet of eight fully refrigerated LPG carriers managed by Thenamaris LNG.

The vessels can carry several types of cargo in fully refrigerated condition including propane, butane, ammonia, and vinyl chloride monomer (VCM). The cargo system design allows up to 5% ethane content and -50 C minimum cargo temperature.

Blue ammonia, a form of ammonia produced using low-carbon or carbon-neutral methods, has emerged as a promising solution in the transition towards cleaner energy sources. Its production involves capturing and storing carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, thereby reducing the carbon footprint associated with traditional ammonia production.

The growing importance of ammonia as a fuel alternative has led LPG carrier owners to diversify into the ammonia shipping market. LPG carriers, with their existing infrastructure and expertise in handling liquefied gases, are well-positioned to transport ammonia, playing a vital role in facilitating its distribution and contributing to the energy transition.

As the world’s largest emitter of greenhouse gases, China is actively seeking cleaner energy sources to reduce carbon emissions and combat climate change. Blue ammonia, produced using low-carbon or carbon-neutral methods, offers an opportunity for China to transition to a more sustainable energy system while diversifying its fuel portfolio. Additionally, blue ammonia can contribute to improving air quality by replacing traditional coal-based energy sources, reducing harmful emissions such as sulfur dioxide and particulate matter.