Japan and Russia to cooperate on hydrogen and ammonia to fight climate change

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A general view of the liquefied natural gas plant operated by Sakhalin Energy in Prigorodnoye on the pacific island of Sakhalin, Russia July 15, 2021. REUTERS/Vladimir Soldatkin//File Photo

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TOKYO, Sept 2 (Reuters) – Japan and Russia agreed on Thursday to work together on hydrogen and ammonia production, Japan’s industry ministry said on Thursday, as longtime partners in the oil and natural gas are focusing on cleaner alternatives to fossil fuels. fuels.

Japanese Industry Minister Hiroshi Kajiyama and Russian Energy Minister Nikolai Shulginov signed a statement on cooperation after a virtual meeting as part of the Eastern Economic Forum, which kicked off Thursday in Vladivostok, Russia .

The two nations will cooperate in research and development and on technology to reduce global warming emissions to the atmosphere, including carbon capture and storage (CCS) and carbon capture and utilization ( CCU).

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While Russia is energy-rich, resource-poor Japan is accelerating efforts to build global supply chains of potentially carbon-free future fuels.

Russia accounted for around 10% of global ammonia production in 2020.

Japan’s Ministry of Industry has also signed a Memorandum of Cooperation (MOC) with Russia’s largest LNG producer Novatek (NVTK.MM) on hydrogen, ammonia, CCS and CCU.

The ministry aims to sign similar memorandums of understanding with a major Russian oil producer and another of its major gas producers later this month, a ministry official said.

Japan, an investor in Russia’s Sakhalin liquefied natural gas (LNG) facility and an importer of Russian oil, is aiming for carbon neutrality by 2050, while Russia has said it will cut emissions from 2030 to 70% of 1990 levels, a target it should reach due to deindustrialization since the breakup of the Soviet Union in 1991.

Hydrogen is mainly used in oil refining and ammonia is used for fertilizers and industrial materials, but both are seen as having the potential to replace higher carbon fuels in the future.

Japan has experimented with hydrogen to replace natural gas and replace some of the coal with ammonia. Read more

It aims to increase its annual hydrogen demand to 3 million tonnes by 2030, and 20 million tonnes by 2050, from around 2 million tonnes currently, and to increase its ammonia demand to 3 million tonnes per year by 2030 from zero now. Read more

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Reporting by Yuka Obayashi in Tokyo and Vladimir Soldatkin in Vladivostok; edited by Barbara Lewis

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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