Danish Project Accelerates to Produce Green Shipping and Aviation Fuel

Denmark green fuel production for shipping and aviation
Power for the hydrogen plant will come from offshore wind and the Avedore Power Station in Denmark (Orsted)

Published Feb 4, 2022 5:41 PM by The Maritime Executive

A Danish project designed to produce large amounts of e-methanol for the shipping and aviation industries announced plans to accelerate by two years its first large-scale production. The partnership behind the Green Fuels for Denmark project, which includes A.P. Moller - Maersk, DFDS, and DNV, now expects to be able to produce more than 50,000 tons of sustainable fuels in 2025, mainly e-methanol for shipping, while also looking to become a first supplier for green aviation fuels.

As a result of the increased Danish ambitions within Power-to-X, the partnership behind the flagship project reported that it has decided to bring forward parts of its plan in order to produce green fuels for heavy transport two years earlier than previously planned. Specifically, the partnership has decided to bring forward 100 MW of the originally planned second phase’s 250 MW electrolysis from 2027 to 2025, as well as to begin capturing sustainable carbon dioxide in 2025.

"Denmark has a unique opportunity to create an industrial success story within green fuels for heavy transport,” said Mads Nipper, Group President and CEO of Ørsted. Which is leading the effort to develop green fuels. “The Danish Parliament and Government have created a very good framework to realize this huge potential through their ambitious goals for the build-out of offshore wind and the construction of Power-to-X facilities.” 

The initial vision for Green Fuels for Denmark called for commissioning a demonstration electrolysis plant powered by offshore wind energy with a capacity of approximately 10 MW in 2023. Construction began on this phase in May 2021 with the plan calling for a subsequent 250 MW in 2027 and 1,300 MW by 2030. The first portion of the scale-up was to be devoted to the shipping industry followed by production of new green fuels for aviation. 

“The science is clear and so are our customers in their ask for sustainable solutions across air, land, and sea,” said Søren Skou, CEO of A.P. Moller – Maersk. “Maersk has set an ambitious milestone target to source sustainable aviation fuel for 30 percent of our air cargo by the end of the decade,” he said noting that he believes an acceleration of the plans can help the company scale its sustainability efforts to meet the needs of the global air cargo operation

The new plan calls for splitting and accelerating the second phase to achieve 100 MW by 2025 and a subsequent additional 150 MV still by 2027. The final phase of the project calls for an additional 1,300 MW that will be able to supply green fuels, primarily jet fuel, that can replace approximately 30 percent of the total fuel consumption at Copenhagen Airport, which will entail a significant green conversion of international air traffic in addition to domestic air travel. Copenhagen Airport and aviation company SAS are also partners in the Green Fuel project.

The Danish Prime Minister's recent announcement of the ambition to accelerate the green transformation of aviation has led the partnership to look for a way to enable the production of green jet fuel as early as 2025. Orsted notes it will be a technological challenge but they believe the Green Fuels for Denmark is prepared to meet the challenges meaning that they could begin supply green aviation fuel by 2025 and two years later will be able to supply enough jet fuel to cover significantly more than the expected Danish domestic consumption of jet fuel and also contribute to the conversion of international aviation from Denmark. The realization of the full second phase depends on the availability of sufficient amounts of new green power from offshore wind to reach its goals.