Pilbara ammonia producer Yara and Engie Australia have declared the way is now clear for construction to begin on the Yuri green hydrogen project which will provide feedstock into the Yara ammonia operations on the Burrup Peninsula in Western Australia’s (WA) northwest following the final investment decision on the renewables project.
The project partners said on Friday they will install a 10 MW electrolyser and 18 MW of solar PV coupled with an 8 MW/5 MWh lithium-ion battery energy storage system for firming.
The plant will be built on the existing Yara Pilbara lease near Karratha, with the supply of renewables to shift the neighbouring ammonia plant’s dependence on natural gas to green hydrogen.
Once completed, the project will be one of Australia’s largest electrolysers, capable of producing up to 640 tonnes of green hydrogen each year. The largest electrolyser currently operating in Australia is Australian Gas Network’s 1.25 MW hydrogen plant at Tonsley Park in South Australia.
Yara said construction would begin on the Yuri project next month with production of green hydrogen scheduled to commence in 2024.
Yara Clean Ammonia president Magnus Krogh Ankarstrand said the processing plant would be the first established operational facilities in WA to receive and use green hydrogen to produce clean ammonia.
Yara Pilbara general manager Laurent Trost said the project would be transformational for the company’s processing operations which comprise the ammonia plant and a technical ammonium nitrate facility.
“Yuri is a key step in the decarbonisation of our operations which already supply markets in Asia and Australia,” he said.
The final investment decision follows the federal government’s announcement on Friday that it will pump $47.5 million through the Australian Renewable Energy Agency’s (ARENA) Renewable Hydrogen Deployment Funding Round into the Yuri green hydrogen project. The Western Australian government has also supported the project with a $2 million grant contribution from the state’s Renewable Hydrogen Fund.
Federal Energy Minister Chris Bowen said the Yuri project marks a step-change in scale towards Australia’s vision of becoming a renewable energy superpower.
“This will help advance Australia towards becoming a world leader in hydrogen generation,” Bowen said. “As we move to a more renewable economy, hydrogen will become an increasingly important part of our energy mix and will be important in supporting industrial and hard to abate sectors.”
WA Hydrogen Industry Minister Alannah MacTiernan welcomed the final investment decision from Engie and Yara, describing it as “an important milestone for WA’s growing renewable hydrogen industry”.
“Yara Pilbara Fertilisers is a world-scale facility, and the project will demonstrate WA’s ability to produce renewable hydrogen on an industrial scale,” she said.
A consortium of Perth-based construction firm Monford Group and French engineering and technology company has been awarded the engineering, procurement, construction and commissioning contract for the renewable hydrogen plant.
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