Preem's refinery plant in Lysekil

Vattenfall and Preem continue their collaboration on fossil-free hydrogen gas for biofuels

The conditions are excellent for building an electrolysis plant for producing hydrogen gas for biofuel in Lysekil, as shown by the study conducted in the spring. Producing hydrogen through fossil-free methods can reduce CO2 emissions by at least 80% compared to using fossil materials. The potential of a first 50 MW plant is now being investigated.

In January, Preem and Vattenfall instigated a strategic analysis of the role of fossil-free hydrogen from electrolysis, produced using fossil-free electricity, could play for Preem's potential to produce biofuels on a large scale. The results for increasing Preem's production of biofuels in the next decade are very promising.

Work continues to investigate the potential of the first 50 MW electrolysis plant at Preem's Lysekil refinery with the aim of moving on to the next phase during the spring of 2022.

Preem's goal of producing about 5 million cubic metres of biofuels by 2030 can reduce transport emissions by up to 12.5 million tonnes of CO2, corresponding to about 20 per cent of Sweden's total emissions. This transition in production will require large-scale supply of hydrogen, and an expansion of one or more electrolysers can play a major role.

"Preem is in the middle of an ambitious transition journey. Fossil-free hydrogen is an interesting technology that lends potential to increased, sustainable production of biofuels," says Peter Abrahamsson, Head of Sustainable Development at Preem.

The size of the first plant is governed by the possibility of scaling up biofuel production as well as obtaining greater output from the electricity grid, which will have an impact on the schedule and costs. A number of factors determine when the new plant can be in place, such as how long the environmental assessment process will take.

"It is very promising that fossil-free electricity has the potential to replace fossil raw materials and thereby reduce emissions from Preem's hydrogen production, as biofuel production increases. To reach Sweden's climate targets, it is vital to partner up to find solutions for transitioning industry processes to lower CO2 emissions. It is also fully in line with Vattenfall's target to enable fossil-free living within one generation," says Andreas Regnell, Vattenfall's Head of Strategy.

Facts on hydrogen in relation to fuel production:

  • Vattenfall and Preem are investigating the potential of large-scale production of fossil-free hydrogen in Lysekil.
  • Hydrogen is needed in producing biofuels as biomass (waste from the forestry and food industries) contains oxygen atoms that must be removed.
  • Hydrogen is used on a large scale at refineries and has traditionally been produced using fossil materials, primarily natural gas and other hydrocarbons.

Vattenfall

Vattenfall is a leading European energy company, which for more than 100 years has electrified industries, supplied energy to people’s homes and modernised our way of living through innovation and cooperation. We now want to make fossil-free living possible within one generation. That is why we are driving the transition to a sustainable energy system through initiatives in renewable production and climate smart energy solutions for our customers. We employ approximately 20,000 people and have operations mainly in Sweden, Germany, the Netherlands, Denmark and the UK. Vattenfall is owned by the Swedish state. 

Preem

Preem is the largest fuel company in Sweden. Our vision is to lead the transition towards a sustainable society. By 2030 at the latest, Preem will produce about 5 million cubic metres of renewable fuel, and will, by 2045, be climate neutral throughout its value chain. Preem's refineries are seen as the most modern and environmentally adapted in Europe with a refining capacity of more than 18 million cubic metres every year. Our operations comprise production, sales, distribution, trading and product sales. We refine and sell fuel, heating oil, lubricants and other products to companies and consumers. We have a nationwide service network with over 520 fuel stations for private and commercial traffic. Preem AB has over 1,500 employees, of which 950 work at our two refineries. Preem had a turnover of SEK 68.2 billion in 2020.

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