Explosives and fertiliser manufacturer Orica has said it will follow on from significant reductions in carbon emissions from its New South Wales ammonia nitrate facility under the federal government’s Safeguard mechanism with further cuts planned at its Queensland sites.
Speaking at a Thursday press conference, Orica CEO Sanjeev Gandhi said emissions had been cut this week at its Kooragang Island ammonia nitrate production site (pictured), eliminating emissions of more than 600,000 tonnes of CO2, which he described as a huge step to future proof this site and to continue on our journey to decarbonise Orica.
Orica uses 15 percent of NSW’s gas, including making ammonia nitrate used in fertiliser production.
Gandhi said: “The Safeguard Mechanism was a very, very important instrument that has encouraged us.
“We’re going to take this initiative now and move to our next big manufacturing site in Australia, which is Queensland, and we’ll do exactly what you’ve done here.
“We intend to further eliminate more than 200,000 tonnes of CO2 out of the Queensland manufacturing site for Ammonium Nitrate.”
The safeguard mechanism sets legislated baseline limits for emissions reduction at major industrial sites.
Earlier this week the federal government announced it would invest $70 million to develop a renewable hydrogen hub in Newcastle, NSW, with with most of the gas earmarked for Orica’s ammonia and ammonium nitrate facility.
Some of the renewable hydrogen produced at a 55 megawatt electrolyser would also be used for refuelling hydrogen buses and trucks at the hub.
Gandhi said the company was future proofing the Kooragang Island site as mart of the emerging hydrogen hub.
Gandhi said: “There are obviously quite a few applications of green hydrogen as an energy source.
“The biggest potential is to replace the consumption of natural gas in manufacturing of chemical products, and this particular site is one of the large consumers of gas in New South Wales, so we intend to take a portion of the green hydrogen and replace the gas demand on the site.
“The rest through Origin Energy our partners but then going to the transport sector, and then as the demand continues to pick up, we continue to skill that capacity up as well.
Picture: Orica Kooragang Island