Hard-to-Downsize Industries Look to Buy Wind Power

This is a feature of Windpower Monthly October 2021 issue. Click here to read the full edition

To subscribe to Windpower, monthly, click here

Industries with high energy demands and hard-to-reduce emissions, such as chemicals, cement and steel, are turning to green power purchase agreements (PPAs) as part of a decarbonization strategy . The first major green hydrogen off-take agreements – which would play a role in decarbonizing these industries when electrification is not feasible – were also announced.

As it targets a net zero target for 2050, chemicals giant BASF is among those who have been busy making deals to buy green power, as well as investing directly in renewable assets. In May, German developer RWE revealed plans to build a 2 GW offshore wind farm in the North Sea to supply BASF and other industrial companies with electricity and green hydrogen. BASF plans to use electricity from the facility to power electric steam cracking furnaces to produce chemicals and heat pumps at its plant in Ludwigshafen (pictured) in the German state of Rhineland-Palatinate.

BASF is working with fellow chemicals companies Linde and Sabic, a unit of Saudi oil and gas group Saudi Aramco, to develop solutions for electrically heated steam cracker furnaces that would run on renewable energy rather than the fossil gas currently used for heating. heating process.

RWE hopes to complete its North Sea project by 2030 and intends to use 20% of the facility’s output to power a 300 MW electrolyser to supply BASF, and potentially other industrial customers. , green hydrogen. Compliance with the target date of 2030 is conditioned by offshore wind tenders which envisage the commissioning of projects before 2030 and an appropriate regulatory framework for the production of green hydrogen.

BASF also announced in June that it had purchased a 49.5% stake in the non-subsidy company from Vattenfall. 1500 MW Hollandse Kust Zuid Hollandse Kust Zuid (1500MW) OffshoreNetherlands, Europe Click to see all the details wind farm in the Dutch North Sea, from which it will purchase electricity through a PPA. Construction has started for commissioning scheduled for 2023.

At the end of November, BASF signed a 25-year PPA with Engie, effective from January 1, 2022, under which Engie will supply several BASF sites in Europe with a total of up to 20.7 TWh of renewable electricity during the entire period. duration of the agreement. The utility will initially source electricity from some of its existing onshore wind farms in Spain, but could expand it to future onshore and offshore projects.

Luxembourg steel producer ArcelorMittal recently signed a 20-year PPA with developer Storm Power to purchase electricity from an 18 MW wind farm that Storm is building at the manufacturer’s production site. steel in Ghent. The wind farm will be the first without subsidy in Belgium.

In the United States, hydrogen fuel cell supplier Plug Power signed a 345 MW wind power PPA with developer Apex Power last July to directly supply a new hydrogen production plant with electricity from a park. wind farm under construction in Texas. The latter is expected to be online by 2023, as is the plant which will produce more than 30 tonnes per day of green liquid hydrogen for industry and transport, enough to supply the equivalent of more than 2,000 commercial vehicles. light or 1000 heavyweights.