Lloyd’s Register (LR) has been selected to undertake key feasibility studies into using clean ammonia to refuel ships at the world-scale ports in the Pilbara region of Western Australia.
The announcement follows the signing of a collaboration agreement in August between Yara Clean Ammonia and the Pilbara Ports Authority (PPA).
LR will provide an analysis focusing on key factors needed to assess the potential uptake of ammonia refuelling (also known as bunkering). The feasibility study will comprise the market for clean fuel shipping, shoreside infrastructure requirements, safety considerations, and the regulations required to support ammonia bunkering at Pilbara ports. The execution of the study is expected to take at least 12 months.
As part of the study, Yara Clean Ammonia and PPA will look to establish an advisory committee, including representatives of shipping customers and providers, to have input into the process.
Last month, the final investment decision was announced for Project Yuri, which will see a renewable hydrogen plant built adjacent to the Yara Pilbara’s existing ammonia plants close to PPA’s Dampier port.
The Yuri plant is an innovation-leading approach and will be one of the first globally to demonstrate the use of renewable hydrogen as a feedstock to produce ammonia at an existing ammonia plant, and is the first project of its kind in Australia.
Tessa Major, VP at Yara Clean Ammonia, said, “Yara’s existing and developing operations in the Pilbara are the perfect catalyst for unlocking new opportunities, and this is strengthened by a shared commitment with PPA to enable decarbonisation in the shipping industry.”
Roger Johnston, PPA CEO, said, “Our operations are in close proximity to ammonia fuel production facilities and there are numerous bulk ships dedicated to particular routes which frequently visit our ports.”
Andy McKeran, CCO of Lloyd’s Register, commented, “The maritime industry had to make some significant investment decisions around alternative fuels in the decade ahead, but maritime value chain stakeholders needed surety on future fuel availability and the existence of landside infrastructure.”