In some exciting news this week, Yara announced that it had joined with French engineering company ENGIE to carry out a $3M feasibility study with the objective of designing a “green” hydrogen plant here in Karratha.

Green hydrogen is that produced sustainably with no CO2 or other toxic emissions and the aim is to integrate it with Yara’s existing plant here in Karratha to make CO2-free ammonia.

Hydrogen is one of the major ingredients of ammonia and Yara currently extracts hydrogen from natural gas, which produces a lot of CO2.

With this new plant, photovoltaic panels would be used to generate clean electricity from the sun, which would then be used to extract hydrogen from water using electrolysis.

Yara is working towards making carbon-free fertilizer, and green hydrogen is the major enabler for making CO2-free or “green” ammonia, which is the key ingredient for “green” fertilizer.

The transition away from fossil fuels will require a global, collective commitment, but as renewable sources like solar and wind are unpredictable, clean hydrogen will likely become a key component in clean energy networks.

If the study is successful, Yara will progress with the first phase of the project here in Karratha, which would be a $200M investment. Future phases could result in an incredible $5 billion spending in total.

This would be a huge step towards making Karratha the Hydrogen Energy Capital of the nation.