October 21, 2014

Boosting fertilizer capacity in Porsgrunn

Already one of the largest fertilizer plants in the world, producing ammonia, nitric acid, NPK and calcium nitrate – the Porsgrunn plant now expands, increasing its capacity by 50,000 tons of compound NPK and 200,000 tons of calcium nitrate annually.
Per Knudsen
Per Knudsen

Creating value On-Shore

The investment, worth USD 350 million, was decided by Yara’s Board on 21 October and preparations are now being made to initiate construction. The expansion is expected to be finalized in 2017. In addition to the increase in production in Porsgrunn, the investment will enable optimization of production in Yara’s Glomfjord and Uusikaupunki sites in northern Norway and Finland, adding a further 150,000 tons of annual NPK capacity. NPK and calcium nitrate are key value-added fertilizers in Yara’s product portfolio, which benefit cash crops in particular.

The increased production capacity alone will match the entire Norwegian consumption of fertilizer of around 400,000 tons annually. Yara produces 2.6 million tons of products in Porsgrunn, enough to supply roughly a third of the French agricultural sector – often ranked as the world’s fifth most important agricultural producer.

“This investment confirms Yara’s ambition to create value through brownfield expansions and debottlenecking projects. Furthermore it strengthens our position as the global NPK leader and shows our dedication to provide farmers with premium products and agronomic competence to increase agricultural productivity,” says Torgeir Kvidal, CEO and President of Yara.

Environmental upside

The project includes a new-build nitric acid plant and innovative technology application, which further bring down greenhouse gas emissions per kilo product, improve energy efficiency and reduce waste. This is in addition to the Enova Project that was concluded this summer by Yara Porsgrunn, which reduced energy consumption by 225 GWh annually.

For Yara Porsgrunn, operating out of a cost-intensive country like Norway, it is vital to turn every stone in order to find ways to produce more efficiently, while always keeping safety as the top priority. The planned expansion and the concluded energy efficiency program are concrete examples of 'turning stones'. It is also a definitive statement of a growing onshore industry in Norway, often predominantly recognized as an offshore player in the oil & gas sector.

“I am proud to see this level of trust in Yara Porsgrunn’s continued capability to create value,” says Per Knudsen, Plant Manager at Yara Porsgrunn, here standing inside a new flue gas pipe in front of the nitric acid plant which will be replaced.

“In a Norwegian context, it is also very pleasing that we can provide a competitive major investment into land-based industrial capacity,” adds Knudsen.