TOPIC PAGE: Sustainability in the fertilizers industry

Erica Sesay


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


New urea application rules to be implemented in England from 1 April
By Deepika Thapliyal 27-Mar-24 LONDON (ICIS)–In England, famers will only be able to apply solid or liquid urea that is treated with an inhibitor from 1 April, according to new regulations from the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (Defra) that come into force next month.

UPM Biochemicals launches new range of bio-based plant stimulants By Sylvia Traganida 27-Mar-24 LONDON (ICIS)–UPM Biochemicals has launched a new range of bio-based plant stimulants which is an alternative to fossil raw materials-based products, the Finnish paper and renewable chemicals firm said on Tuesday.

Mabanaft signs letter of intent for supply of green ammonia from Canada
By Sylvia Traganida 19-Mar-24 LONDON (ICIS)–Germany-headquartered energy firm Mabanaft has signed a letter of intent (LOI) with US-based Pattern Energy for the supply of green ammonia to Mabanaft.

Yara Growth Ventures invests in electrolysis technology for low-cost renewable hydrogen By Sylvia Traganida 08-Mar-24 LONDON (ICIS)–Norwegian fertilizer major Yara has invested in Danish electrolysis technology company Dynelectro through its corporate venture capital team Yara Growth Ventures.

Yara signs agreement with Acme Cleantech subsidiary on green ammonia
By Sylvia Traganida 01-Mar-24 LONDON (ICIS)–Norwegian fertilizer major Yara has signed an agreement with GHC SAOC for supply of ammonia with reduced carbon emissions from Acme to Yara on a long-term basis.

Idemitsu to join US clean ammonia project By Stefan Baumgarten 27-Feb-24 LONDON (ICIS)–Idemitsu Kosan has agreed to join a 1.2 million tonne/year clean ammonia project that Mitsubishi Corp and Proman plan to develop at Lake Charles, Louisiana, US, it said on Tuesday.

Germany’s Heraeus invests in Japanese ammonia tech company By Stefan Baumgarten 22-Feb-24 LONDON (ICIS)–German technology group Heraeus has invested an undisclosed amount in Tsubame BHB, a Japanese company that has developed a precious metal-based technology for decentralized ammonia production.

Malaysia’s PCG, Sarawak Petchem agree to study low-carbon ammonia and urea plant By Nurluqman Suratman 21-Feb-24 SINGAPORE (ICIS)–Malaysia’s PETRONAS Chemicals Group (PCG) and methanol producer Sarawak Petchem on Wednesday signed an agreement for a joint feasibility study aimed at establishing a low-carbon ammonia and urea production facility in Bintulu, Sarawak.

Egypt’s Helwan signs agreement to produce black urea By Deepika Thapliyal 20-Feb-24 LONDON (ICIS)–In Egypt, Helwan has signed an agreement with SML-INNO UK Ltd to set up the world’s first vertical integrated unit to produce black urea, with a capacity of 130,000 tonnes annually, the company said today.

EU eases climate proposals after widespread farmer protests
By Chris Vlachopoulos 07-Feb-24 LONDON (ICIS)–European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen announced on Tuesday that the EU has agreed to ease key demands in its climate proposal plans, following intense protests from farmers.

Tecnimont awarded engineering contract for Portugal green hydrogen, ammonia plant By Graeme Paterson 05-Feb-24 LONDON (ICIS)–Tecnimont has been awarded an engineering contract to develop an integrated green hydrogen and green ammonia plant at Sines, Portugal, its parent company Maire said.


What is it?

The risk of carbon leakage frustrates the EU’s efforts to meet climate objectives. It occurs when companies transfer production to countries that are less strict on emissions, or when EU products are replaced by more carbon-intensive imports.

This new mechanism would counteract this risk by putting a carbon price on imports of certain goods from outside of the EU.

How will it work?

EU importers will buy carbon certificates corresponding to the carbon price that would have been paid, had the goods been produced under the EU’s carbon pricing rules.

Conversely, once a non-EU producer can show that they have already paid a price for the carbon used in the production of the imported goods, the corresponding cost can be fully deducted for the EU importer.

This will help reduce the risk of carbon leakage by encouraging producers in non-EU countries to make their production processes greener.

A reporting system will apply from 2023 with the objective of facilitating a smooth roll out and to facilitate dialogue with non-EU countries. Importers will start paying a financial adjustment in 2026.

How is the fertilizer industry affected?

The fertilizer industry is one of the sectors to fall under the CBAM.

The more energy-intensive nitrogen fertilizers will be affected most in the sector by the mechanism.


The UK’s Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA) has imposed new regulations on urea application in England.

Famers will only be able to apply solid or liquid urea that is treated with an inhibitor from 1 April.

The move is aimed to reduce ammonia emissions, and would increase costs for farmers by an estimated £40/tonne.

The new rules apply to any fertilizer that contains 1% or more of urea nitrogen, with applications of solid urea or liquid (urea ammonium nitrate) fertilizer from 1 April having to include a urease inhibitor

Untreated solid urea or liquid UAN fertilizer can be applied between 15 January to 31 March each year.

Untreated liquid UAN fertiliser can be applied after 1 April if agronomic justification is provided by a certified fertilizers advisor, mentioning ammonia losses will be at or below the level of when a urease inhibitor is included.

Foliar urea applications targeting the crop, using normal spray nozzles do not require a urease inhibitor.

The implementation of the Defra regulations was delayed by two years due to higher fertilizer prices and lack of supply following the covid pandemic and the Ukraine war.


EU proposes relaxation in policy following farmer protests

Biden Administration invests $207m in domestic fertilizer and clean energy endeavours

Brazil’s state of Ceara, Bp sign MoU for green hydrogen site 

Atome Energy in talks with buyers for green fertilizer from Paraguay unit

Sweden’s Cinis targets Asia potash market with Itochu partnership

Helwan selects Eurotecnica’s Euromel G5 technology for new melamine facility in Egypt

India’s Adani Group plans $24bn green energy park; RIL to commission giga complex

INPEX and LSB pick technology for US ammonia project

Bayer partners with energy firms on hydrogen cluster in Germany

S Korean group picks KBR tech for Malaysian green ammonia project

Abu Qir signs MoU for green ammonia project in Egypt

Yara aims to launch first container ship to run off clean ammonia

India’s Odisha state approves green hydrogen, ammonia, methanol projects

ADM announces launch of regenerative agriculture program in Brazil

Fertiglobe completes first renewable ammonia shipment with carbon certification

Allied Green Ammonia picks Topsoe’s tech for Australia project

Germany’s VNG looks to secure offtake from Norwegian low carbon ammonia plant

Gentari enters into agreement with AM Green to invest into a green ammonia delivery platform

ITOCHU Corporation, Orascom Construction sign MOU for development of ammonia bunkering in Suez Canal

India developing port infrastructure for green hydrogen exports

S Korea, Saudi Arabia firms sign 46 pacts, includes blue ammonia project

INSIGHT: CBAM reporting begins, fertilizer exporters to EU challenged to account for carbon

KBR to supply green ammonia tech to Madoqua Power2X site in Portugal

Germany’s SOM to build green hydrogen, ammonia facility in Brazil’s Piaui state

US ADM and Syngenta sign MoU to collaborate on low carbon oilseeds to meet biofuel demand

Tecnicas Reunidas, Allied Green Ammonia to build green hydrogen and green ammonia plant in Australia

Australian fertilizer producer Orica accelerates climate change targets

Nestle, Cargill and CCm Technologies launch joint UK trial on sustainable fertilizer

EnBW acquires stake in planned Norwegian ammonia plant 

Yara Germany signs agreement for decarbonisation of cereal cultivation using green fertilizers

Hyphen, ITOCHU ink MoU to explore potential Namibia hydrogen collaboration 

INSIGHT: BASF grapples with demand trough, slow road back

SABIC AN ships low-carbon urea to New Zealand

US Cargill and John Deere collaborate to enable revenue for farmers adopting sustainability

Canada’s Lucent Bio announces approval of biodegradable nutrient delivery patent

Aker, Statkraft’s 10-year PPA to spur European renewable ammonia push further

BASF, Yara Clean Ammonia to evaluate low-carbon blue ammonia production facility in US Gulf Coast

Yara Clean Ammonia, Cepsa to launch clean hydrogen maritime corridor

EU details CBAM reporting obligations

Saudi Arabia’s Ma’aden exports its first low-carbon blue ammonia shipments to China

US Bunge and Nutrien Ag announce alliance to support sustainable farming practices

Maire subsidiary Stamicarbon wins US green ammonia engineering contract

India’s IFFCO launches liquid nano-DAP fertilizer

EU Parliament backs CBAM, emissions trading measures

OCP granted €100m green loan to build solar plants at Morocco facilities

EU unveils plans to tackle greenwashing

India’s IFFCO and CIL to manufacture nano DAP for three years

USDA awards Ostara funds to boost sustainable phosphate fertilizer output

Canadian prime minister confirms fertilizer emission goal is voluntary

US fertilizers industry increases carbon capture in 2021 – TFI

Indian president calls for reduction in chemical fertilizer use

IFFCO plans to export nano urea to 25 countries

Amman selects Elessent Clean Technologies for Indonesia sulphuric acid plant

Lotte Chemical forms clean ammonia consultative body with RWE and Mitsubishi Corporation

Global 2020-2021 specialty fertilizer demand growth led by north America, Asia

BASF and Cargill extend enzymes business and distribution to US

Saudi Aramco awards sulphur facilities overhaul contract to Technip

India sets green hydrogen targets for shipping, oil & gas, fertilizer sectors

Germany misses climate target despite lower energy consumption

TFI reacts to US Congress passing the Water Resources Development ActHelm becomes a shareholder in UK bio-fertilizer company Unium Bioscience

Yara inks deal to deliver fossil-free green fertilizers to Argentina

Canadian firms plan fuel cell generator pilot using green ammonia

Deepak Fertilizers awards contract to reduce emissions, increase productivity

Saudi Aramco launches $1.5bn sustainability fund to support net zero ambition

CF Industries and ExxonMobil plan CCS project in Louisiana

Canada’s plan to cut fertilizer emissions is voluntary – minister

Canada’s fertilizer emission goal raises food production concerns

Uniper, Vesta to cooperate on renewable ammonia site in the Netherlands

German Uniper to work with Japan’s JERA on US clean ammonia projects

ADNOC ships first cargo of low-carbon ammonia to Germany

US Mosaic and BioConsortia expand collaboration to microbial biostimulant

IMO deems Mediterranean Sea area for sulphur oxides emissions control

Canada’s Soilgenic launches new enhanced efficiency fertilizers technology for retail

Austria’s Borealis aims to produce 1.8m tonnes/year of circular products by 2030

European Parliament rejects proposed carbon market reform

IFA ’22: southern Africa looks to bio-fertilizer as cheaper, sustainable option

IFA ’22: Indian farmers will struggle to embrace specialty fertilizers – producer

Canadian Nutrien plans to build world’s largest clean ammonia facility in Louisiana

Japan’s JGC Holdings awards green ammonia plant contract to KBR

Bayer to partner with Ginkgo to produce sustainable fertilizers

Australia Orica and H2U Group partner on Gladstone green ammonia project

Canada sets tax credit of up to 60% for carbon capture projects

UK delays urea restrictions to support farmers as fertilizer costs at record high

EU states agree to back carbon border tax

Yara to develop novel green fertilizer from recycled nutrients

USDA announces plans for $250m grant programme to support American-made fertilizer

Canada seeks guidance to achieve fertilizer emissions target

Fertilizer titan Pupuk Indonesia develops hydrogen/blue ammonia business

India launches green hydrogen/ammonia policy, targets exports
Canada AmmPower to develop green hydrogen and ammonia facility in Louisiana

US DOE awards grant to project to recover rare earth elements from phosphate production

Fertiglobe, Masdar, Engie to develop green hydrogen for ammonia production

Czech Republic’s Spolana enhances granular AS production

India’s Reliance to invest $80bn in green energy projects

Yara, Sweden’s Lantmannen aim to commercialise green ammonia by 2023

Novatek and Uniper target Russia to Germany blue-ammonia supply chain

Fertz giant Yara goes green with electrification of Norwegian factoryCanada

Arianne Phosphate exploring use of phosphate for hydrogen technology

FAO and IFA renew MoU to promote sustainable fertilizer use

Sumitomo Chemical, Yara to explore clean ammonia collaboration

Sri Lanka revokes ban on imports

Tokyo scientists convert bioplastic into nitrogen fertilizer

Aramco plans Saudi green hydrogen, ammonia project

China announces action plan for carbon peaking & neutrality

Saudi Aramco targets net zero emissions from operations by 2050

Fertiglobe goes green with Red Sea zero-carbon ammonia pro

Australian fertilizer major Incitec Pivot teams up for green ammonia study

INTERVIEW: BASF to scale up new decarbonisation tech in second half of decade – CEO

India asks fertilizer companies to speed up production of nano DAP

Japan’s Itochu set to receive first cargo of blue ammonia for fertilizer use

Norway’s Yara acquires recycled fertilizers maker Ecolan

Bayer Funds US start-up aims to cut nitrogen fertilizer use by 30%

BP: Green ammonia production in Australia feasible, but needs huge investment

Origin and MOL explore shipping green ammonia from Australia

India’s IFFCO seeks to export nano urea fertilizer

Sri Lanka reinstates ban on import of chemical fertilizers

Nutrien to cut greenhouse gas emissions 30% by 2030


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