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JPN - Japan Pushes Ahead With Ammonia as a Shipping Fuel of the Future

Japan is planning to introduce ammonia as fuel into the shipping industry and make it commercially available in the late 2020s as part of its efforts to go carbon-neutral by 2050.

The solution was examined at today’s meeting of the fuel ammonia council, which was established back in October. The council is made up of representatives from the public and private sectors to solve technical and other supply-chain hurdles to the introduction and expansion of using ammonia as a fuel.

The council also wants to introduce ammonia into the fuel mix for thermal power generation.

“Ammonia is expected to be introduced as fuels on a commercial basis for thermal power generation and shipping in the late 2020s, and it is expected to be used for a significant amount by around 2030,” Ryo Minami, director-general of oil, gas and mineral resources at the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, told the council meeting.

Ammonia joins renewable energy sources like solar, wind, geothermal, hydro, and biomass, as it doesn’t emit CO2 even when burned. Being already mainly used for fertilizer applications, it has an international trading infrastructure in place, however, there still a need for some technical issues to be resolved, incuding safe pressurization, liquefaction and combustion before it can become widely used as a fuel.

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