Cracking feasibility study launched in Rostock

EnBW, VNG and Jera

The Port of Rostock, where EnBW, VNG and Jera are exploring the feasibility of a large-scale ammonia cracker. Source: Port of Rostock.
Click to learn more. The Port of Rostock, where EnBW, VNG and Jera are exploring the feasibility of a large-scale ammonia cracker. Source: Port of Rostock.

The trio will jointly conduct a feasibility study to evaluate the construction of an ammonia cracker demonstration plant at the Port of Rostock. The large-scale imports of hydrogen-as-ammonia into Europe are of particular interest to EnBW – an energy company historically focused on fossil fuels, but which is now pivoting to renewable energy generation and alternative fuels. German gas importer & utility VNG is already involved in several tie-ups focused on ammonia imports into Europe, partnering with Aker Horizons, Yara and Total Eren. And Japanese energy giant Jera is working across the full ammonia value chain, particularly where supply of ammonia as a fuel for power generation is concerned.

At EnBW, we are working at full steam to transform our generation capacities from fossil fuels such as coal to non-fossil fuels such as hydrogen. The joint project between EnBW, VNG and JERA fits in very well with our efforts to become climate-neutral by 2035…With an ammonia cracker, ammonia can be reconverted to hydrogen and be transported to German customers. The key is to create the right conditions now for the fastest possible decarbonization of the business and the market ramp-up for hydrogen – in particular through planning certainty for investors and international collaborations.

Georg Stamatelopoulos, Member of the EnBW Board of Management / Chief Operating Officer Sustainable Generation Infrastructure in his organisation’s official press release, 12 June 2023

In the context of this project, the formulation of a robust ammonia value chain is specifically the option which must be established by a strong collaborative framework among industry players with a wide variety of backgrounds, through sharing the same views on their purpose and strategic direction. I am very confident that this project is a giant leap towards our bright and clean future.

Chairman of the Board, Global CEO in JERA, Yukio Kani in EnBW’s official press release, 12 June 2023

Rostock joins a list of European ports where large-scale ammonia cracking is being considered, or a demonstration plant has already been announced. Air Liquide will develop a facility in the Port of Antwerp by 2024, the Port of Rotterdam has concluded a million-tonne-per-year cracker is feasible to construct, and in the UK, Air Products will develop the Immingham Green Energy Terminal, while Essar Group will develop a cracking facility near Liverpool. Uniper is also assessing the feasibility of an industrial-sized cracker at Wilhelmshaven in Germany, while thyssenkrupp and ADNOC are considering which major European port to base a demonstration cracker at, following joint development of their own technology.

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