Tank Storage Magazine v15 i06


Volume: 15
Issue: 6
Date Published: October 29, 2019



An energy storage frontrunner

Following First State Investment’s acquisition of Vopak’s former Amsterdam terminal, Evos Amsterdam is wellpositionedto become a frontrunner in current and new forms of energy storage & distribution The Evos Amsterdam terminal has significant potential to be one of the storage leaders in the global energy transition as well as cementing its position in the clean petroleum products market following its acquisition by First State Investment.First State, the international arm of First Sentier Investors, bought Vopak’s terminals in Amsterdam and Hamburg for €600 million and rebranded them to Evos having identified the synergies both facilities have with the company’s long-term infrastructure investment philosophy. The change of ownership was completed on September 30 and following that, it was announced that First State also reached agreement on the acquisition of Vopak Terminal Algeciras.Its facility located in the heart of the Port of Amsterdam, the largest gasoline port in Europe, was established in 2011 with a capacity of more than 1.2 million m3 for clean petroleum products such as gasoline, diesel, and gasoil as well as related components used for blending.The Hamburg terminal comprises 149 tanks with a total capacity of 670,000 m3 for various liquids products and the Algeciras terminal has a capacity of 403,000 m3 for bunker fuels. All the terminals are ideally positioned to play an important role in the transitional movement towards more renewable forms of energy, supported by an owner that has the desire to invest in sustainable forms of energy production, storage, and distribution.

The sustainable energy solution

Channoil Consulting’s Mark Waddington examines the future of sustainable fuels, EU Renewable Energy directives, supplier requirements and the impact this could have on the European storage sector As the world looks for more sustainable energy solutions, a big feature in the transition to sustainability will be biofuels.Currently, Europe is at the forefront of implementing mandates to move the industry towards high levels of renewable fuel in the transport fuel pool. What happens in Europe will provide a barometer for other parts of the world as they move increasingly to biofuels as part of the sustainable solution.The mandates in Europe will have implications on trade flows of renewable fuel, feedstocks and finished components. They will also have important implications for the activities of storage companies. It is important to examine the background behind the changes happening in Europe, how these changes are expected to impact storage companies as well as look ahead to see where this might lead both in Europe and in other demand regions.

Fuelling the future

An innovative new carrier technology that makes hydrogen easier and safer to store, transport & distribute is the first step in facilitating global hydrogen supply to industrial energy sectors The role of renewable energies in reducing the environmental burden of global energy emissions has resulted in an increase in innovative technologies to unlock their full potential.The growth of hydrogen as a fuel, which today is around 60 million tonnes, is testament to the growing global interest in pursuing decarbonised forms of energy. When consumed in a fuel cell hydrogen only produces water and it can be produced from natural gas, nuclear power, biomass as well as renewable energy.As the smallest and lightest molecule, the efficient storage and transportation of hydrogen is key to connecting the upstream and downstream sectors of the hydrogen supply chain.Identifying the growing importance for safe and efficient transportation of hydrogen, Dr Daniel Teichmann researched and discovered a new liquid organic hydrogen carrier (LOHC) – Dibenzyltoluene – as a highly efficient and convenient method for storage and transporting hydrogen. The process involves chemically binding hydrogen molecules to aneasy-to-handle oil and is based on a reversible catalytic hydrogenation/dehydrogenation process, which has been well established in the industry.Together with Professors Wasserscheid Arlt and Schlücker, Teichmann founded Hydrogenious LOHC Technologies. More than six years after the company’s creation, it now has more than 60 employees and has realised projects on a global scale.

A greener storage future

As sustainability firmly takes the spotlight across the globe, storage operators are embarking on initiatives to future proof their businesses by ensuring they remain a relevant part of the new energy supply chain. Amy McLellan reports Against a backdrop of weekly climate strikes, mass arrests of Extinction Rebellion protestors, another record-breaking season of temperatures and increasingly dire warnings from climate scientists, no organisation can afford to ignore sustainability. Whether it’s banning plastic, sourcing sustainable products or improving workers’ rights, there’s increased pressure on companies to do the right thing and minimise the impact almost eight billion people are having on the planet.No industry comes under more pressure than the oil industry. In September the annual industry shindig, the Oil & Money conference, now its 40th year, lost the sponsorship of the New York Times as both organisations were targeted by protest group Extinction Rebellion, which called the event a gathering of ‘swindlers, polluters and planetarydestroyers of epic proportions’. Other industry events, including the recent Offshore Europe Expo in Aberdeen, have been hit by ‘die ins’ staged by the group.And it’s not just environmental activists that have the industry in their sights. Even investment managers are increasingly cautious about holding oil stocks given that income and profits could well shrink should governments increasingly prioritise low-carbon energy to meet UN-backed Paris agreement emissions goals to limit global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees.As yet, however, ‘Big Oil’ is still backing, well, big oil, with investment remaining solid against a backdrop of geopolitical uncertainty. Carbon Tracker, a London-based not-for-profit think tank, highlights that the world’s largest listed oil and gas companies each spent at least 30% of their investment in 2018 on projects that are inconsistent with the IEA’s most ambitious low emissions pathway – heading for a 1.6?C world. The report found projects already sanctioned by the oil and gas industry will take the world beyond a Paris-compliant 1.5?C warming pathway and risk being stranded assets if governments around the world pursue policies that drastically shrink demand for carbon fuels.

Decarbonising the EU economy

For those of you who are new to FETSA, it is the Federation of European Tank Storage Associations. FETSA works forthe bulk liquid storage sector to ensure tank storage industry interests are listened to, and acted upon, in Brussels, the de facto ‘capital’ of the EU.It is the start of a new policy making cycle at EU level with a new European Commission about to take office, a newly elected European Parliament and new Presidents of the EU public authorities. The policies and legislation made inBrussels, will impact storage operators directly at national level as EU countries are obliged to apply EU law and policy, developed in Brussels.One of the features of the new legislature (i.e. European Parliament and Commission) is an absolute commitment to decarbonising the EU economy and achieving net zero emissions by 2050. The EU has a plan on how to reach these goals. This plan is composed of ‘pathways’. Each pathway to the decarbonisation/net-zero objective focuses ona blend of different, potentially sustainable fuel types.

Europe's LNG potential

North West Europe’s leading LNG hub continues to break records as a global supply glut results in increased throughput and loading activity In a few short years Gate Terminal has seen LNG activity surge considerably at its facility as global production capacity increases against growing interest in the environmentally friendly fuel product.The first LNG cargo arrived at the storage and regasification facility back in 2011, however since last year Gate Terminal has been breaking record after record, including the fact that during 2019 it has almost transferred more gas into the pipeline network than in the whole period from 2011 up to and including 2018. The company has also gone past the point where it has now put more gas into the network this year than the whole annual consumption of all the homes in the Netherlands.But there is one particular achievement that Gate LNG’s managing director Wim Groenendijk is particularly proud of: ‘We have been able to continue with our excellent track record for reliability and safety and we have recently been able to celebrate eight years without any lost time incidents. ‘It has not only been yet another busy year for us here at Gate, but we were able to conduct all operations safely and this is one of our key business priorities.’

Oil market vulnerabilities exposed

An attack on two oil facilities in the world’s largest crude oil exporting county sent shockwaves throughout oil markets and raised concerns about the vulnerability of the global supply chain.The UAV attack by 18 drones and seven cruise missiles on Saudi Aramco’s Adqaiq facility and its Khuaris oil field mid-September resulted in the production suspension of 5.7 million barrels of crude oil per day, accounting for more than half of the Kingdom’s global daily exports.Abqaiq and Khurais are the main processing centres for Arab Extra Light and Arab Light crude oil and China, South Korea, Japan and India are the biggest takers of these grades. Over the last year-and-a-half, Asia’s dependence on Saudi Arabian crude has increased significantly.