Strike places hope in Haber to reach net-zero by 2030

PERTH Basin operator Strike Energy has declared it intends to reach net-zero Scope 1 and 2 emissions by 2030 by banking on the success and offsets of its Project Haber fertiliser project.
Strike places hope in Haber to reach net-zero by 2030 Strike places hope in Haber to reach net-zero by 2030 Strike places hope in Haber to reach net-zero by 2030 Strike places hope in Haber to reach net-zero by 2030 Strike places hope in Haber to reach net-zero by 2030

Strike CEO and managing director Stuart Nicholls. ENB/Paul Hunt

Mark Tilly

Journalist

Mark Tilly

The 1.4 million tonne per annum urea plant announced earlier this year is the key to reaching its target, according to Strike. It said the project would offset emissions created from its domestic gas production by creating locally produced fertiliser that would otherwise have a higher carbon footprint if it was produced and imported from overseas.

Earlier this month Strike said based on pre-FEED work it was doing with Technip FMC, the expected abatement from the project would be in the range of 650,000-795,000 tonnes of CO2-equivalent per year - a 50-60% reduction in the carbon footprint of Australian urea fertilisers based on 2019 demand. 

The company said this abatement would fully offset the 40 terajoules of gas per day from Phase 1 and 150TJ/d from Phase 2 of its Greater Erregulla project. 

Strike expects the project would reach peak emissions of around 180,000tpa by 2024-25, with Haber's offsets leaving headroom for increased production. 

The company initially will use Greater Erregulla gas as the ammonia feedstock for Haber, but eventually would begin blending it with green hydrogen at a ratio of 1.25%, or 20% at a stretch case at a later date. 

Strike said Haber has the potential to produce urea with a complete carbon footprint of 0.46t of CO2e per urea tonne. 

"Project Haber is the enabler for Strike to make the ambitious target of achieving net-zero scope 1 & 2 emissions by 2030," Strike CEO and managing director Stuart Nicholls said. 

"Strike continues to set the pace for industry as it positions itself as a responsible and sustainable energy and fertiliser manufacturing company of the future." 

However, as Strike notes, the fertiliser project is still in pre-FEED development stages, with its success hinging on the proving up of sufficient gas reserves at South Erregulla, the outcomes of FEED, access to finance, equity participation, urea offtake agreements, and approvals. 

Nicholls emphatically told Energy News he was "putting money where his mouth was" and ready to have remuneration bonuses set to the targets. The company's remuneration committee is looking to set short- medium- and long-term targets to measure its progress against the net-zero 2030 target. 

"We recognise these targets are ambitious and aggressive," Nicholls said.

"We've put in front of you tangible and detailed targets - this isn't some magical hydrogen or CCS technology that no one understands the costs of or how to get there, this is a very well-articulated commitment." 

Nicholls said if the economics of Haber did not stack up, it would look to its Mid-West geothermal asset to help it reach its net-zero target, until then however it was planning to use its geothermal resources to help it reduce Scope 3 emissions. 

Strike announced last month it was acquiring Mid West Geothermal Power to develop a geo project in Strike's wider Perth Basin acreage, saying it was a natural complement, with a high degree of operational and intellectual property overlap. 

The company hopes its geothermal assets could generate 350MW, 100% renewable, fully dispatchable, geothermal power, which it expects could displace 2.7MMtpa of CO2-equivalent. 

"Should the company achieve success through its Mid-West Geothermal Project, it would possess sufficient offsets to meet its aspirations of being Australia's first net zero energy company across all of its Scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions," Nicholls said. 

"This will create additional value as our net zero emissions energy attracts premium pricing from industrial energy consumers who are making their own transition to a low carbon future."

Strike shares are worth 37c.