Dow Benelux Outlines Investment Plans to Spearhead Carbon Neutrality Goals in the Netherlands
The roadmap makes Terneuzen a flagship site and role model for the company’s global climate neutrality goals
Dow Benelux, a subsidiary of US-based Dow, has outlined its roadmap to reduce current CO2 emissions from its operations in Terneuzen, the Netherlands in support of the Dutch Climate Agreement. The company aims to reduce carbon emissions at its Terneuzen facility by more than 40 percent by 2030 on its path to achieving net CO2 neutrality by 2050. Designed in three phases, the roadmap makes Terneuzen a flagship site and role model for the company’s global climate neutrality goals, which align with the Netherlands’ commitment to building a sustainable future.
“We are part of a vital and critical industry – we supply building blocks for thousands of consumer goods, many of which provide CO2 reducing benefits to our customers and the value chain. We want to continue to supply those products while enhancing our long-standing commitment to sustainability, so we need and want to adapt how we manufacture those products to help address climate change. With this roadmap we aim to enable low-CO2 products to be made in the Netherlands,” said Anton van Beek, President of Dow Benelux.
The project is currently moving through Dow’s project management process, with a preliminary investment decision expected in 2022.
Three-phase plan will invest in clean hydrogen and other breakthrough technologies, and create green jobs
In the first phase, the plan foresees the construction of a clean hydrogen plant where by-products from core production processes would be converted into hydrogen and CO2. The hydrogen will be used as a clean fuel in the production process, while the CO2 will be captured and stored until alternative technologies develop. Expected to launch in 2026, the hydrogen plant will allow Dow in Terneuzen to reduce CO2 emissions by approximately 1.4 million tons per year – equivalent to the annual emissions of more than 300,000 cars.
The first phase will also include additional investments in site infrastructure for CO2 liquefaction, air separation, hydrogen distribution and CO2 transport. Building the new hydrogen plant and the associated infrastructure is expected to create 400 to 500 permanent jobs at Dow, in the region and across associated service providers.
In the second phase, by 2030, Dow will capture CO2 from its ethylene oxide plant and replace some gas turbines with electrical motor drives. This will avoid a further 300,000 tons of CO2 emissions per year.
The third and final phase of the plan will develop and implement additional breakthrough technologies to replace fuel usage in the production processes. An example is Dow’s previously announced collaboration with Shell to electrify ethylene steam cracking furnaces. These furnaces currently rely on fuel combustion, which makes them CO2-emission intensive when not fired on clean hydrogen. Switching to electrical cracking with clean electricity will reduce the CO2 footprint of the production process to near zero emissions.
Dow Benelux turns to public-private cooperation in Dutch chemical sector to achieve carbon neutrality
Dow’s carbon neutrality goals will be bolstered by the Dutch chemical industry, where innovative companies, knowledge institutes and government regularly forge public-private partnerships to develop forward-looking solutions. Van Beek affirmed that multi-stakeholder cooperation will be essential to drive the successful implementation of the project:
“Public-private collaboration will be of utmost importance. The scale and complexity of the challenge is such that only through the collaboration of industry, academia, government and others, can we turn the tide on climate change. We encourage the Dutch government to continue to partner with industry and incentivize investment in clean energy and related technologies to support the long-term competitiveness of Dutch industry while reducing carbon emissions and achieving net carbon neutrality.”
Source: Business Wire21 June 2021