Green hydrogen and ammonia production venture launches in Chile

Image: Mainstream Renewable Power

Ireland headquartered Mainstream Renewable Power and Norway’s Aker Clean Hydrogen are partnering on the production of green hydrogen and low cost ammonia in Chile.

Under a letter of intent the two companies will collaborate on developing a complete and commercially viable green value chain in Chile, drawing on Aker’s hydrogen project development capabilities and Mainstream’s portfolio of wind and solar park projects in the country.

Aker Clean Hydrogen is a newly established subsidiary of clean energy investor Aker Horizons, which was set up to develop industrial scale green hydrogen production facilities across the world. The initiative with Mainstream is one of a portfolio of nine launch projects and prospects.

Others include a cooperation with Statkraft and Yara to establish Europe’s first industrial-scale green ammonia project in Norway and other green ammonia projects in Norway and Uruguay to advance emission free shipping in the Arctic and Antarctic respectively.

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Mainstream’s Chile projects include the 1.3GW Andes Renovables wind and solar generation platform comprised of seven onshore wind and three solar PV projects, which are currently in the construction phase. The first phase with 571MW is due to commence commercial operation later this year.

Among its extensive additional project development portfolio, more than 1GW is earmarked for this green hydrogen and ammonia collaboration.

“Chile’s stable institutions, in addition to responsible fiscal policy, controlled inflation and multiple international trade agreements, make it an ideal location for foreign investment,” says Juan Carlos Jobet, Minister of Energy and Mining.

“Our National Green Hydrogen Strategy is beginning to be implemented to translate our vast renewable resource potential into competitive clean energy investment.”

The agreement follows an earlier agreement by Aker Horizons in January to acquire a 75% share in Mainstream. The transaction subject to the usual approvals is expected in the second quarter of 2021.

The two companies anticipate gaining unique access to additional opportunities through their long local competence in Chile, which Mainstream first entered back in 2008.

They have not specified where the hydrogen venture is to be developed but it will likely be in the Antofagasta region in the north where the majority of the Andes Renovables projects are located.

Chile’s Hydrogen Strategy targets 5GW of hydrogen electrolysis capacity operating and under development by 2025 and 25GW of electrolysis achieving a price of hydrogen below US$1.50/kg by 2030.

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