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torsdag, november 9, 2023

Decarbonising European Fertilizer Manufacturing – Pathways to Sustainable Meals – EURACTIV.com

The home fertilizer sector is essential for meals safety and for enhancing a resilient and sustainable meals techniques in Europe and past. The trade is dedicated to play its half in Europe’s goal of changing into climate-neutral by 2050. By transitioning to extra sustainable, environment friendly fertilizer manufacturing utilizing renewable vitality and recycling vitamins we are going to get us nearer to a sustainable meals chain.

Antoine Hoxha is Director Common of Fertilizers Europe.

From 2005 to 2020, the EU fertilizers trade already lowered its scope 1 and a pair of emissions by 49%, primarily as a consequence of N₂O abatement in nitric acid. Such modifications have positioned European Business because the lowest emitter of the worldwide sector. To transcend this stage of effectivity and reaching the Inexperienced Deal goals, a drastic change within the manufacturing course of and big investments are required along with a mix of coverage options and entry to inexpensive, low-carbon and renewable vitality.

Bold Milestones Forward

The European fertilizer trade has outlined clear milestones:

  • By 2026, all Fertilizers member firms will undertake a grasp plan for decarbonisation.
  • By 2040, a dedication to scale back scope 1 and a pair of GHG emissions by 70% in comparison with 2020 ranges.
  • By 2050, the imaginative and prescient is for European fertilizer manufacturing to be climate-neutral.

The European fertilizer trade collaborated with Guidehouse consultancy to develop a decarbonisation plan for the trade, outlining the journey to net-zero and the steps wanted to show this imaginative and prescient into actuality.

Exploring Pathways to Decarbonisation

The fertilizer trade decarbonisation Roadmap explores two major transitional pathways for the sector in Europe. Whereas numerous of their method, each these pathways converge on the frequent objective of eliminating CO₂ emissions by 2050.

The Know-how Impartial Pathway: This method envisions decarbonisation utilizing varied accessible applied sciences: electrolysis, carbon seize and utilisation (CCU), carbon seize and storage (CCS), and bio-methane. The selection of know-how is tailor-made to regional infrastructure and vitality useful resource availability. Using the applied sciences from throughout what many name the “Hydrogen Rainbow” relying on geographical location is the objective of this pathway.

The Inexperienced Hydrogen Pathway: This pathway depends solely on utilizing renewable fuels of non-biological origin (RFNBO) to exchange hydrogen derived from pure fuel. Its success hinges deeply on the supply and cost-effectiveness of renewable vitality sources and the required infrastructure for producing and distributing inexperienced hydrogen, hydrogen produced from the electrolysis of water utilizing renewable vitality for energy.

Challenges and Issues

The trade’s transition in the direction of decarbonisation is just not with out its challenges. As vital nationwide property, fertilizer vegetation are strategically positioned throughout EU Member States based mostly on elements reminiscent of the supply of pure fuel, uncooked supplies, logistics infrastructure, and proximity to agricultural markets. To make sure a profitable transition, there have to be a reliable provide of competitively priced low-carbon and renewable electrical energy, biomethane, hydrogen, and CO₂ infrastructure.

The selection between these decarbonisation eventualities will rely upon particular person plant wants and the various availability and value of vitality carriers throughout Europe. The implementation of a sustainable, climate-neutral nitrogen fertilizer economic system might be region-specific and product-specific, necessitating adaptable insurance policies which take into account the completely different circumstances of sectoral gamers throughout the continent.

The Funding Panorama

Decarbonising the trade calls for vital funding. For example, if all hydrogen utilized in ammonia manufacturing was produced with offshore wind-driven electrolysers this may entail an funding of €64 billion for the wind parks, €17 billion for the electrolysers, and €3 billion for a hydrogen pipeline community. This vastly overshadows the present common annual sectoral funding of €1.2 billion. Moreover, the trade’s lead time for such investments can lengthen to seven years or extra.

Future Markets and Alternatives

As a producer and client of roughly 40% of the whole European hydrogen, the fertilizer trade has a singular position to play within the EU Inexperienced Deal and the event of a hydrogen economic system in Europe. The potential for low-carbon and renewable ammonia extends past purely fertilizers for agriculture. Ammonia, a hydrogen-dense molecule, opens up prospects for decarbonisation by changing fossil fuels in purposes reminiscent of energy and warmth era, for top temperature warmth in industrial course of, as a transport vector for hydrogen and as a substitute delivery gasoline. Certainly, the IEA Web Zero Roadmap forecasts that the share of ammonia as a delivery gasoline will attain 44% by 2050 (Web Zero Roadmap: A World Pathway to Hold the 1.5 °C Aim in Attain – Evaluation – IEA). As such a strategic product for agriculture and past, it’s important that the coverage panorama ensures the continued manufacturing of ammonia in Europe.

Conditions for Success

Whereas the manufacturing of renewable and low-carbon fertilizers is attainable and promising, a number of challenges have to be addressed.

A supportive regulatory and funding framework ought to envisage:

Entry to Low-Carbon and Renewable Vitality and Feedstock: Reasonably priced inexperienced and low-carbon vitality entry is important to bridge the aggressive hole between Europe and competing areas. Europe ought to proceed to increase its renewable vitality capabilities, with consideration to regional variations on effectivity.

Demand for Local weather-Impartial Fertilizers: The demand for climate-neutral EU-produced fertilizers have to be supported by means of mechanisms like a labelling system accompanied by a compulsory buying goal for all EU nitrogen fertilizer purchasers.

Focused Funding: Measures to ‘de-risk’ early investments are required to shut the fee hole between low-carbon and renewable routes and present manufacturing processes together with accelerating the procedures for public funding. For instance, a carbon contract for distinction, the place governments cowl the distinction in low-carbon and renewable and the standard price of manufacturing for a restricted time, would de-risk investments.

Prevention of Unfair Competitors: The well timed and efficient improvement and implementation of the Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM) might be essential to forestall unfair aggressive benefits for non-EU producers importing to Europe. Nonetheless, there’s at the moment no settlement on an export resolution. Concrete safeguards might be required to make sure the continual competitiveness of the European export-oriented manufacturing.


The journey of the European fertilizer trade towards a climate-neutral future is bold however essential to hold the targets of the Inexperienced Deal, reaching net-zero emissions by 2050. With the suitable legislative framework, funding panorama, and collaborative efforts, this imaginative and prescient can change into a actuality, guaranteeing Europe’s meals safety and strategic autonomy for generations to come back.

For a deeper dive into the European fertilizer trade’s journey in the direction of climate-neutrality, please go to: https://www.fertilizerseurope.com/decarbonising-fertilizers-by-2050/

Be a part of a debate

On 14 November 2023, the occasion entitled “Decarbonising European Fertilizer Manufacturing – Pathways to Sustainable Meals” might be an event to unveil the European Fertilizer Business’s Roadmap to Local weather Neutrality. To study extra concerning the occasion and to register go to our web site.

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