Exxon and Grieg Launch Study on Ammonia Bunkering Hub on the Oslofjord

The Slagen refinery and marine terminal would provide the basis for the future ammonia hub (Image courtesy Exxon / Grieg Edge)

Published Jun 27, 2022 7:44 PM by The Maritime Executive

A consortium led by ExxonMobil is looking into the possibility of setting up a green ammonia bunkering hub at the Slagen terminal, a brownfield site with a liquid bulk pier on the Oslofjord.

The Slagen terminal is the marine side of Exxon's Slagentangen refinery complex, which once handled six million tonnes a year of North Sea crude oil. Its output supplied more than half of Norway's domestic consumption, and its petroleum-product export volume made it one of the largest onshore Norwegian exporters. It closed 12 months ago due to what Exxon described as "strong competition, evolving regulatory measures, and falling demand."

The refinery's business required a marine terminal that could handle hundreds of tanker calls a year. As designed, the largest berth at the Slagen terminal can accommodate vessels with a draft of up to 62 feet and a length of up to 1,150 feet. This is ample space to accommodate the vast majority of the 10,000 vessels per year that call in the greater Oslo region, and Exxon is studying the possibility of using it as the basis for an ammonia bunkering hub. 

To explore this possibility, Exxon is working with Grieg Edge (the green-shipping arm of Grieg Maritime), North Ammonia (an ammonia-bunkering JV between Arendals Fossekompani and Grieg Maritime) and GreenH (a green-H2 startup which is part-owned by Grieg Maritime). Together, they are looking at the possibility of making 20,000 tonnes of green H2 on site (using Norway's abundant hydropower) and distribute up to 100,000 tonnes of green ammonia per year. The partners will also look at the possibility of distributing ammonia from production facilities located south of Slagen. 

“Slagen is an exceptionally suitable location as a central hub for hydrogen and ammonia to the maritime sector,” said Matt Duke, CEO of Grieg Maritime Group. 

Grieg could potentially be among the facility's shipowning customers. The company recently received approval in principle from DNV for the design of an ammonia-fueled ammonia tanker, the future MS Green Ammonia. The tanker is a part of the separate Berlevåg project, which will source wind from the Raggovidda onshore wind farm in Finnmark to produce green ammonia.