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Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners announces a consortium with Enagás, Naturgy, Fertiberia and Vestas to produce hydrogen and green ammonia on a large scale in Spain

The Catalina project has the potential to create 5,000 jobs and avoid the emission of one million tonnes of CO2 per year

  • Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners is developing the first phase of the Catalina Project together with Enagás, Naturgy, Fertiberia and Vestas.
  • Catalina is a pioneering global project for the production of hydrogen and green ammonia, which will connect Aragon's excellent renewable resources to industrial consumption centres on the east coast of Spain via a sustainable infrastructure.
  • Once fully implemented, the project will achieve 5GW of wind and solar photovoltaic power in Aragon that will supply a 2GW electrolyser. In this sense, the Catalina Project could produce enough hydrogen to cover 30% of the current demand for hydrogen in Spain.

The first phase, Catalina I, is at an advanced stage of development. It is expected to obtain all necessary permits within the next two years and start construction by the end of 2023. Catalina I will have 1.7GW of wind and solar photovoltaic power connected to a 500MW electrolyser that will produce 40,000 tonnes of green hydrogen per year. The project will connect Aragon and Valencia via a hydrogen pipeline that will transport this hydrogen to a newly built ammonia plant that will produce 200,000 tonnes of green ammonia per year.

The green ammonia will be used for the production of sustainable fertilisers at Fertiberia's plant in Sagunto (Valencia), which will represent a major step forward in the decarbonisation of the agricultural sector. The green hydrogen will also be used to decarbonise other industrial processes and to inject it into the natural gas grid. Catalina I has applied for grid connection in Andorra (Teruel), in the Mudéjar bidding, where it will have a major impact on the socio-economic development of the area.

Catalina I will reduce CO2 emissions by one million tonnes per year and up to 2.5 million tonnes when the project is fully built, equivalent to the annual electricity consumption of almost 2 million homes.

Collaboration with local stakeholders and local socio-economic development are priorities for this project and the consortium members firmly believe in the value of Catalina as a driver of employment, development of R&D&I programmes and the creation of new value chains associated with the reactivation of the economy in the area. In that sense, during the construction and installation of the first phase of the project, Catalina I will contribute to the creation of more than 5,000 jobs in Aragon and Valencia.

The Catalina Project will make a major contribution to the Strategic Project for Economic Recovery and Transformation (PERTE) of Renewable Energies, Renewable Hydrogen and Storage (ERHA), which aims to position Spain as a reference in the production of green hydrogen worldwide. The members of the consortium have signed a collaboration agreement to carry out the project.

Søren Toftgard, partner at Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners, said: "I am very proud to announce the Catalina Project, a pioneering initiative in Europe for the large-scale production of hydrogen and green ammonia. Spain, and Aragon in particular, offer very good conditions for the development of this technology given their excellent wind and solar resources, political backing and proximity to centres of demand. We will continue to work together with our partners to carry out this project.”

Marcelino Oreja, CEO of Enagás, said "This project for the development of green hydrogen in Spain is the result of a common agreement between these international leaders in the sector. It reflects our goal to contribute to decarbonisation, in a way that is compatible with boosting competitive industry and job creation, and to bring the energy transition to all territories, leaving no one behind."

Jorge Barredo, General Manager of Renewables, New Businesses and Innovation at Naturgy, also said: “This new project will boost one of the lines of investment in our Strategic Plan and will add to other projects we have underway in Spain. At Naturgy, we want to play a leading role in the energy transition and hydrogen is one of the essential vectors for achieving a decarbonised economy; that is why we want to cover the entire value chain, from production to end use, and our gas infrastructure is a clear ally for delivering it to consumer sectors".

Javier Goñi, CEO of Grupo Fertiberia, assures that “Our participation in the Catalina Project allows us to maintain our leading position in the decarbonisation of the plant nutrition sector in Europe. The green ammonia generated by this consortium will be used as a raw material for the production of green fertilisers at Grupo Fertiberia's plant in Sagunto . It will also have other industrial uses for this highly efficient carbon-free molecule. Sagunto will thus become the Group's third plant to use green hydrogen and ammonia, after the Puertollano and Palos de la Frontera plants, and will be 100% decarbonised, which once again demonstrates our company's firm commitment to the ecological transition in the agricultural sector.”

"As a world leader in sustainable energy solutions, we at Vestas are proud to participate in this historic and innovative project. We expect Catalina to show the huge socio-economic impact that P-t-X renewable projects can generate not only for the decarbonisation of our societies, but also in terms of economic growth and employment," says Vestas Vice President of Development for Europe, Latin America, Middle East, Europe and Africa, Íñigo Sabater.

Members of the Consortium

Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners (CIP) is the world's largest investment fund manager dedicated to renewable energy infrastructure. CIP manages eight investment funds with approximately 16 billion Euros from 100 institutional investors from Europe, Asia, Australia and North America as well as multilateral organisations. The Catalina Project will be part of the Energy Transition Fund, which focuses on investments in power-to-x and other next generation renewable energy technologies dedicated to the decarbonisation of hard-to-electrify sectors such as agriculture and transport. CIP is currently managing other investments in Spain and specifically in Aragon, where it operates the Monegros wind farm (487.5MW) and is developing several projects.

Enagás, with 50 years' experience, is an international benchmark in the development, maintenance and operation of gas infrastructures. It is certified as an independent TSO by the European Union and operates in eight countries: Spain. United States, Mexico, Chile, Peru, Albania, Greece and Italy. Enagás has 12,000 km of gas pipelines, three underground storage facilities and eight regasification plants. In Spain, it is the leading natural gas transmission company and the technical manager of the gas grid. Enagás is promoting 55 projects in Spain in the field of renewable gases and decarbonisation (34 green hydrogen projects and 21 biomethane projects) together with more than 60 partners, and is committed to being carbon neutral by 2040. It is a global leader in its sector in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index, according to the latest revision of this indicator, forms part of the S&P ESG Index and has received the highest score in the CDP Climate Change Ranking, as well as numerous other distinctions.

Naturgy is a multinational energy group, present in the electricity and gas business, operating in the generation, distribution and marketing of energy and services, with 9,300 employees worldwide. Present in more than 20 countries, with more than 15.3GW of installed capacity, Naturgy supplies gas and electricity to 16 million customers and is currently developing a portfolio of green hydrogen projects both in Spain and internationally, with the aim of providing long-term value to its customers, as well as sustainable solutions from a perspective of social and environmental commitment.

Grupo Fertiberia, with more than 1,500 employees and 13 industrial work sites distributed across the Iberian Peninsula and France, is a leader in the plant nutrition sector in the EU, where it develops, produces and markets innovative agricultural solutions that improve the competitive standing of the agricultural sector and support the ecological transition of a vital sector for the European economy. The Group is also one of the world’s leading companies in the ammonia market and produces environmental solutions for the industrial sector and other sectors.

Vestas is the leading global sustainable energy company. The company designs, manufactures, installs and maintains wind turbines around the world. With more than 145 GW of installed capacity in 85 countries, Vestas has installed more wind capacity than any other manufacturer. Thanks to its Smart Data capabilities and 124 GW of wind turbines that Vestas operates and maintains worldwide, the company has a wealth of data that enables it to interpret, forecast and get the most out of the wind resource, providing the best wind energy solutions. Together with its customers and more than 29,000 employees, Vestas offers sustainable energy solutions to promote a clean planet and a brighter future.

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