TOPIC PAGE: Sustainability in the fertilizers industry

Author: Erica Sesay


Updated on 4 May with infographic on key sustainability developments.

On this topic page, we gather all the latest news, analysis and resources, which will help you to keep track of developments in the area of sustainability in the fertilizers industry.


Canada sets new target for cutting GHG emissionsBy Stefan Baumgarten 22-Apr-21 16:33 TORONTO (ICIS)--Canada on Thursday announced a new target for cutting its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, following a similar announcement in the US by President Joe Biden.

Biden seeks to reduce US CO2 emissions by as much as 52% by '30By Sunny Roe 22-Apr-21 15:50 HOUSTON (ICIS)--President Joe Biden announced at the Leaders Summit on Climate on Thursday that the US will reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) by 50-52% below its 2005 levels by 2030.

Canada raises GHG target, boosts spending on 'green recovery'By Stefan Baumgarten 20-Apr-21 14:42 TORONTO (ICIS)--Canada’s federal government plans to spend an additional Canadian dollar (C$) 17.6bn (US$14.1bn) on “green recovery” measures, and is raising the target for reducing the country's greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, it said in releasing its 2021 budget after markets closed on Monday (19 April).

Ukraine's Naftogaz eyes integrated fertilizer, natural gas, renewable cluster amid energy transition commitments

By Aura Sabadus 19-Apr-21 14:57 LONDON (ICIS)--The Ukrainian gas incumbent Naftogaz aims to expand its activities in the fertilizer and renewables sectors in addition to ramping up gas explorations in the Black Sea later this year, the advisor to the CEO told ICIS in an interview.

Swiss Glencore addresses water incidents, provides stewardship update in sustainability report

By Annalise Porter 16-Apr-21 20:52 HOUSTON (ICIS)--Swiss metals miner Glencore addressed two 2020 water-related environmental incidents in its annual sustainability report released this week.

Nutrien to cut greenhouse gas emissions 30% by 2030

By Erica Sesay 12-Apr-21 16:19 LONDON (ICIS)--Canadian fertilizers producer Nutrien aims to reduce operational GHG emissions by 30% by 2030, it said in its 2021 Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Report.

Reservoir at abandoned Florida fertilizer site in danger of uncontrolled toxic breach

By Annalise Porter 05-Apr-21 19:38 HOUSTON (ICIS)--A leak in a reservoir full of toxic fertilizer byproduct wastewater in Manatee County, Florida, led to emergency measures and evacuations over the weekend.

Swiss Glencore withdrew more water in 2020 at mining operations

By Annalise Porter 19-Mar-21 18:00 HOUSTON (ICIS)--Glencore withdrew marginally more water during 2020 than in the previous year, the Swiss mining company said in its annual report.

World Water Day addresses sustainability in agriculture, fertilizer sectors

By Annalise Porter 22-Mar-21 HOUSTON (ICIS)--Global organisations addressed sustainability - including within the agricultural sector and fertilizer industry - during World Water Day on 22 March. Agriculture consumes around 70% of global freshwater withdrawals annually. Meanwhile, climate change is causing drier soil conditions, larger precipitation variability and higher evaporation rates.

Mitsubishi signs MoU for clean fuel ammonia production in Indonesia

By Richard Ewing 19-Mar-21 13:32 LONDON (ICIS)--Fertilizer trader Mitsubishi Corp on Friday announced the signing of a joint study on carbon capture and storage (CCS) and carbon dioxide utilisation for clean fuel ammonia production in Central Sulawesi, Indonesia.

UK producer CF Fertilisers receives funding for carbon capture and storage initiative

By Mark Milam 19-Mar-21 18:35 HOUSTON (ICIS)--Producer CF Fertilisers UK announced that its Ince manufacturing facility in Cheshire will receive £510,000 ($707,740) in government support related to HyNet North West, an important carbon capture and storage (CCS) initiative.

India eyes complete national ban on single-use plastics by H2 ‘22

By Priya Jestin 15-Mar-21 09:55 MUMBAI (ICIS)--India is working on a national policy aimed at completely phasing out single-use plastics by the second half of 2022, taking into account varied paces of compliance across states over the past five years.

Australia's Danakali mulls sun and wind to power Eritrea potash project

By Erica Sesay 12-Mar-21 12:03 LONDON (ICIS)-- Australian potash firm Danakali has concluded that both solar and wind energy are viable sources of power generation for the Colluli potash project in Eritrea.

Digitalization is key in achieving fertilizers sustainability goals - sources

By Erica Sesay 11-Mar-21 18:25 LONDON (ICIS)--Digital connectivity is essential to meeting sustainability goals, according to industry executives at the International Fertilizers Association (IFA) global sustainability conference.

Bolivian energy chiefs target green hydrogen projects

By Richard Ewing 01-Mar-21 17:37 LONDON (ICIS)--Bolivia’s Minister of Hydrocarbons and Energies on Friday announced a strategic plan for green hydrogen generation to increase the country’s energy potential and to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Phosphogypsum use to contribute to fertilizers circular economy - sources

By Erica Sesay 10-Mar-21 17:50 LONDON (ICIS)--Increasing the use of Phosphogypsum (PG) in the fertilizers industry will further contribute to a circular economy, according to industry executives on Wednesday.

US producer Mosaic partners with Sound Agriculture on nutrient efficiency product

By Mark Milam 10-Mar-21 19:09 HOUSTON (ICIS)--US fertilizer producer Mosaic has announced it has formed a strategic partnership with Sound Agriculture to bring a revolutionary nutrient efficiency product to the market which will boost yields across major row crops and improve soil health.

Germany's BASF seals partnerships to expand bio-surfactants operations

By Stefan Baumgarten 10-Mar-21 14:15 LONDON (ICIS)--BASF has signed two partnership agreements to expand its position in the global bio-based surfactants and actives market, the German-based company said on Wednesday.

China’s emissions ambition to accelerate hydrogen developments

By Yu Yunfeng 09-Mar-21 08:23 SINGAPORE (ICIS)--China’s ambition to achieve peak emissions by 2030 and carbon neutrality by 2060 will accelerate the development of hydrogen as a fuel for power generation and vehicles.

Saudi Aramco and HHIH team up on blue hydrogen and ammonia

By Richard Ewing 08-Mar-21 18:34 LONDON (ICIS)--Saudi Aramco has confirmed its non-binding memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Hyundai Heavy Industries Holdings (HHIH) on blue hydrogen and ammonia is a research and development opportunity, not a commercial agreement.

Government subsidies hinder India’s move to sustainable fertilizers - sources

By Erica Sesay 09-Mar-21 16:48 LONDON (ICIS)--India will have a delayed transition to newer and more sustainable fertilizers, if the government continues to subsidise traditional chemical fertilizers, according to industry executives on Tuesday.

Two Mosaic fertilizers designated as Enhanced Efficiency Fertilizers

By Erica Sesay 02-Mar-21 13:28 LONDON (ICIS)--Two of Mosaic's fertilizers have been labelled as Enhanced Efficiency Fertilizers (EEF) as defined by the Association of American Plant Food Control Officials (AAPFCO), according to the US fertilizer producer.

UAE’s Tadweer starts refurbished organic fertilizers plant

By Erica Sesay 01-Mar-21 15:08 LONDON (ICIS)--Abu Dhabi Waste Management Centre (Tadweer) has started operations at the Liwa Compost Plant in Al Dhafra, following a refurbishment to increase its capacity.


The UK’s Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA) launched a consultation at the beginning of November 2020 on reducing ammonia emissions from urea fertilizers. The consultation ran until 26 January 2021.

It set out three options for tackling ammonia emissions:

  • A total ban on solid urea fertilizers
  • A requirement to stabilise solid urea fertilizers with the addition of a urease inhibitor.
  • A requirement to restrict the spreading of solid urea fertilizers to between 15 January and 31 March of a given year.

Liquid urea is excluded from any new rules or restrictions.

DEFRA is currently analysing the feedback received. Should it decide to restrict the use of urea, that would leave growers with just ammonium nitrate-based fertilizers.