• A new joint venture agreement has been signed by Air Products, ACWA Power and the city of NEOM for a massive renewable hydrogen project in Saudi Arabia
  • To be powered by more than 4 GW of solar, wind and storage capacity, it will produce 650 tons of renewable hydrogen daily once it is online in 2025
  • This renewable hydrogen will be used to manufacture 1.2 million tons of green ammonia which Air Products will export globally for the transportation market

Saudi Arabia’s envisioned sustainable city NEOM is to host a green hydrogen-based ammonia production facility powered by more than 4 GW of renewable energy from solar, wind and storage capacity. For this $5 billion project, American industrial gas and chemicals company Air Products and Chemicals has entered an agreement to launch a joint venture with Saudi Arabia’s ACWA Power and NEOM.

ACWA Power is on board to provide renewable energy support for this project.

The green ammonia produced by this green hydrogen project, to be owned equally by the 3 partners, will be exported to global markets. The renewable energy will help produce 650 tons of hydrogen through electrolysis process every day earning it the distinction of being the ‘world’s largest renewable hydrogen project’.

While the electrolysis plant will be provided by German technology group Thyssen Krupp, Air Products will provide its own technology to produce nitrogen by air separation. Through this process, the 3 partners expect to produce 1.2 million tons of green ammonia annually once it comes online in 2025. Air Products will be the exclusive off-taker of this green ammonia to be exported globally for the transportation market.

This project beats the plans announced by oil major BP to generate 1 million tons of renewable ammonia in Australia (see BP Wins ARENA Funding For Renewable Hydrogen).

“Harnessing the unique profile of NEOM’s sun and wind to convert water to hydrogen, this project will yield a totally clean source of energy on a massive scale and will save the world over 3 million tons of CO2 emissions annually and eliminate smog-forming emissions and other pollutants from the equivalent of over 700,000 cars,” said Seifi Ghasemi, Chairman, President and CEO for Air Products.

It is a first such partnership for NEOM in the renewable energy field to help it ‘become a major player in the global hydrogen market’. The move follows Air Products’ strategic cooperation agreement (SCA) for world-scale electrolysis plants to generate green hydrogen with Thyssen Krupp under which the latter will provide its technology for water electrolysis plants to be built, owned and operated by Air Products in key regions.

The Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz in October 2017 announced NEOM as a new city on the Red Sea Coast to be completely powered by solar and wind energy. It preceded an agreement between the country and Japanese investor Masayoshi Son led SoftBank Group to develop 200 GW of solar PV capacity by the year 2030, but no specific location was disclosed.