BASF and energy company RWE have unveiled a plan to build an offshore windfarm to provide renewable energy for the chemical company’s production processes
The plan envisions construction of a 2-GW offshore windfarm to provide BASF’s Ludwigshafen chemical site with green electricity and enable CO2-free production of hydrogen. The aim is to electrify production processes for basic chemicals, which are currently based on the use of fossil fuels.
The chief executives of BASF and RWE have signed a letter of intent covering wide-ranging cooperation for the creation of additional renewable electricity capacity.
The plan could result in the avoidance of around 3.8 million tonnes of CO2 emissions a year, of which 2.8 million tonnes would be realized directly at BASF in Ludwigshafen. No public subsidies would be needed for the construction of the windfarm.
BASF chairman Martin Brudermüller said, “Without the availability of sufficient volumes of electricity from renewable sources at competitive prices, our transformation will not be possible. It is only achievable with innovative cooperation. And it requires collaboration across value chains.”
RWE chief executive Markus Krebber said the new offshore windfarm is “already in the planning stage.” He said that realisation of the plan “would represent a true acceleration of the expansion of renewable energy.”
Realizing the plan will require a suitable regulatory framework. German policymakers have said they plan to significantly increase expansion targets for renewable energy and accelerate capacity additions. “For this to succeed, there will need to be a tendering process for new offshore project sites,” said RWE.
“These sites should be specifically designated for tenders focused on industrial transformation processes and green electricity should not be subject to EEG levy. In addition, there is currently no regulatory framework for CO2-free hydrogen production.”