Fortescue announces development study into green ammonia plant in Tasmania

Nov 17, 2020

Fortescue Metals Group (Fortescue) confirms it is investigating the development of a green ammonia plant in Bell Bay, Tasmania, which has been announced as a successful participant in the Tasmanian Government’s Renewable Hydrogen Industry Development Funding program. 

The project envisages the construction of a 250MW green hydrogen plant at the Bell Bay Industrial Precinct with green ammonia production capacity of 250,000 tonnes per year for domestic and international export. It has the capacity to be one of the world’s largest green hydrogen plants, powered entirely by Tasmanian renewable energy. The project is targeted for an investment decision by the Fortescue Board in 2021.

Fortescue Chief Executive Officer Elizabeth Gaines said, “Working with our wholly owned subsidiary Fortescue Future Industries, we are assessing clean energy opportunities locally and internationally to  capitalise on the important role that green hydrogen will play to ensure the world can meet the Paris 2050 targets.

“Subject to detailed feasibility analysis, the Tasmania Project will be an important step in demonstrating our intention to position Australia at the forefront of the establishment of a bulk export market for green hydrogen. 

“Fortescue has a successful track record of identifying and assessing opportunities and by building on our expertise and supply chain capabilities, we will ensure that the financial and project execution discipline that Fortescue is renowned for is applied to projects developed by Fortescue Future Industries.

“Partnering with the Tasmanian Government to harness the abundant renewable energy in Tasmania, we see potential to create a significant new green industry,” Ms Gaines said.

The project supports Fortescue’s industry-leading operational target to be net zero by 2040, and builds on the Company’s investment in green hydrogen production and technologies, including:

  • A partnership with the CSIRO for the development of new hydrogen technologies, including a world first membrane technology which provides the potential for large scale hydrogen extraction from ammonia
  • A$32 million hydrogen mobility project at Christmas Creek comprising the construction of a renewable hydrogen refuelling facility and the deployment of a fleet of hydrogen fuel cell passenger coaches from mid-2021 
  • A partnership with ATCO Australia to build and operate the first combined green hydrogen production and refuelling facility in Western Australia
  • A Memorandum of Understanding with Hyundai Motor Co and CSIRO to advance renewable hydrogen technology for domestic transport