Dutch-Flemish joint venture is committed to a 90 percent CO2 reduction in 2050

Overhandiging Roadmap tweede kamer april 2018

Eleven multinational companies in the South-West Netherlands and East Flanders region are jointly taking up the challenge to realizing the 80% to 95% CO2 reduction target set in Paris, by 2050. In addition, they want to make a substantial contribution to the forthcoming Climate Agreement. They will do this via the cross-border Smart Delta Resources (SDR) partnership. 

The CE Delft research agency has been asked to develop a roadmap together with the companies with measures that will be needed from 2018 to achieve these goals. The measures are included in the 'Roadmap towards a climate neutral industry in the Delta region'. The roadmap was presented to the House of Representatives and the general delegate of the Flemish government in the Netherlands on Tuesday, April 17.

Eight concrete projects to reduce CO2 emissions 

Three strategic priorities have been formulated in the roadmap:  

  • Electricity and hydrogen
  • Circular raw materials 
  • CO2 storage and use (CCS and CCU).  

The three priorities have subsequently been translated into eight concrete projects. When implemented, this can lead to the intended effect of reducing CO2 to 90% by 2050. This involves, among other things, a hydrogen network for the exchange of hydrogen between Ghent and Vlissingen, an electrolyser of 100 MW to produce hydrogen, the construction of a network for the storage of CO2 and the steel to chemicals project, in which residual flows from the steel and chemical industries are converted into synthesis gas.

Favorable environmental factors 

The SDR region is ideally suited to start the industry transition. The SDR companies are located relatively closely together. Through mutual cooperation they can realize a higher CO2 reduction than if they pursue the climate goals individually. Currently they are among the world’s top when it comes to energy efficiency and emission reduction. Over the past decades they have invested heavily in this. However, through cooperation in the realization of climate objectives they want to become trend-setters all over the world.

Necessary preconditions

The companies affiliated with SDR are now starting to develop these projects and have earmarked budget and manpower to this end. However, the realization of these projects depends on several external factors. That is why SDR is explicitly seeking cooperation with governments, network companies and other stakeholders. This mainly concerns investments in infrastructure, the development of technology, regulations, regional integration and the price development of, among other things, CO2, energy and oil. At least as important is the condition that the competitiveness and continuity of the SDR companies are maintained in the execution of the projects. This is only possible if there is also an international level playing field for the companies. This requires a realistic approach.

Ambitious goals

The objectives to realize the climate transition are ambitious, fraught with uncertainties and are difficult to realize within the current commercial situation. However, the SDR companies realize that these conditions must change in order to realize the transition. Taking the first steps, in cooperation with relevant stakeholders, is therefore now necessary. The roadmap is intended to provide a substantive ingredient here.  

Read also (in Dutch): 

Zware industrie komt met ambitieus klimaatplan (Heavy industry comes up with an ambitious climate plan (FD))

Dit is hoe Zeeuwse bedrijven 90 procent minder CO2 willen uitstoten (This is how Zeeland companies want to emit 90 percent less CO2 (Omroep Zeeland))

About Smart Delta Resources

Smart Delta Resources (SDR) is a cross-border partnership of 11 multinational companies in the West-Brabant, Zeeland and the Canal area of Ghent, referred to here as the Delta region. The partnership is supported by the Province of Zeeland, North Sea Port and Economic Impulse Zeeland. The 11 companies are: Arcelor Mittal, Cargill, Cosun, Dow, Engie, ICL-IP, LambWeston-Meijer, Sabic, Trinseo, Yara, and Zeeland Refinery.  

SDR was established in 2014 with the aim of strengthening the competitive position of the member companies and of the region. By developing joint business cases for the exchange of residual and material flows ('industrial symbiosis') and through industrial transition, this objective has been put into practice. In the meantime some of these business cases have now been and will be realized. Because of the climate agreements of Paris and the resulting European and national policy, the focus of the partnership has come to lie more in reducing CO2 emissions and the circular economy, without losing sight of the original objectives.

Read more about SDR