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SUSTAINABLE FUEL IS NOT SCIENCE FICTION, SAYS DFDS

Friday, August 21, 2020 

Copenhagen-based shipping company DFDS and fellow transport companies Ørsted, Mærsk, Copenhagen Airports, DSV Panalpina and SAS are joining forces with Nel, Everfuel and Haldor Topsøe to establish one of the world’s largest electrolyser and sustainable fuel production facilities and apply for a substantial grant from Innovation Fund Denmark.

Today, DFDS says sustainable fuels are more expensive than fossil fuels. To compete with fossil fuels, the production of sustainable fuels has to become viable. This requires governments to create the right framework for private investments in industrial-scale production.

Earlier this year, DFDS announced it is part of a ground breaking partnership to establish a 1,3GW hydrogen and e-fuel production facility in Copenhagen. Part of the facility is expected to be up and running by 2023,aiming to provide fuels for maritime, air and road transport. The overall vision for the partnership is to build the project in three phases of 10MW, 250MW and 1.3GW, respectively. The partnership has now submitted an application to the Danish Innovation Fund for a large double-digit million kroner amount. At the same time, Nel, Everfuel and Haldor Topsøe have joined the partnership in the first phases of the project, which now covers the entire value chain for production, distribution and consumption of sustainable fuels.

Jakob Steffensen, DFDS Head of Innovation and Partnerships, said: “The project is off to a great start and it makes me so happy to see that our diverse innovation portfolio is coming together. What we are seeing now is that one project can provide valuable input – literally – to another. With this project, we are developing hydrogen production that we can test on an actual vessel, our fuel cell test ship Ark Germania. That will help us answer a lot of questions that are currently up in the air and cannot be answered unless we test and learn from the results. We need a lot of data and testing to be able to make the right decisions when it comes to producing and using sustainable fuel. In this first phase, we are working on developing hydrogen fuel cells that will help us achieve zero emission port stays. Infrastructure is a key word in these early days. If you can fuel a ship using hydrogen, what does that require in terms of risk assessments, training the crew and technical installations? In the end, we want the entire value chain to be sustainable: the vessels, the terminals, the entire infrastructure. But it needs to be safe, too, as well as responsible and commercially viable. And right now, we are laying the groundwork for making all that possible.”

DFDS CEO Torben Carlsen said: “This is a very good example of how we work with innovation in DFDS: hands-on, collaborating with industry peers and other experts, all with the aim of being able to provide more sustainable transport services. This is in line with our new strategic action plan that describes how DFDS will reach its goal of zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. I am proud of the team and look forward to seeing the first results.”

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