Europe’s hunt for clean energy in the Middle East has a dirty secret

By Verity Ratcliffe

28 Sep 2022 · 8 min read

Editor's Note

Blue ammonia has been dubbed as one of the climate-friendly energy sources of the future. However, it appears that it is not as clean as it may seem - Bloomberg explains why.

On September 10, a ship docked at the German port of Hamburg carrying a little-known fuel that’s being billed as a potential clean answer to Europe’s energy woes: blue ammonia. Made from hydrogen, it can also be burned without producing any emissions of planet-warming carbon dioxide and has the advantage of being easier to transport.

Europe’s first test cargo is destined for the continent’s largest copper producer, Aurubis AG, under a deal struck with the United Arab Emirates just three weeks after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine upended global energy markets. The second shipment will depart within weeks, Mariam Almheiri, the UAE's Minister of Climate Change and Environment, said last week.

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