Methanol plant established in Antwerp

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A consortium of seven partners is planning a sustainable methanol plant to be constructed in the Port of Antwerp. ENGIE, Fluxys, Indaver, INOVYN, Port of Antwerp, PMV, the investment company of the Flemish Government, and Oiltanking have established the consortium for the sustainable production of methanol, an essential raw material used by industry in the port. Each partner brings its own knowledge, experience and expertise to the project. Although the methanol is not earmarked for bunker fuel it does demonstrate the potential of new production methods.

The project is called ‘Power-to-Methanol Antwerp BV’ and in the important next phase of the project, the consortium will be working on all the necessary steps to prepare for the expected construction of the demonstration plant. The construction of a demonstration plant at the INOVYN site in Antwerp is scheduled to start by 2022, with the aim of producing 8,000 tons of sustainable methanol annually, thus avoiding at least an equivalent volume of CO2 emissions.

Methanol is an essential multi-purpose raw material for the chemical industry, with many applications in wider industry as well. This key raw material is indispensable to the daily operation of the port of Antwerp as the largest European integrated energy and chemical cluster. Currently, methanol is produced using fossil raw materials. The ‘Power-to-Methanol’ project aims to replace this with sustainably produced methanol, a first for Belgium.

This methanol will be produced from captured CO2 and sustainably generated hydrogen. The carbon dioxide is captured by means of Carbon Capture and Utilisation (CCU), through which CO2 emissions are partially recovered and then combined with hydrogen generated on the basis of green energy produced from renewable electricity.