Japan planning to use ammonia fuel for cutting CO2

Japan's government and corporate sector have drawn up plans to use ammonia as a fuel for thermal power plants.

Ammonia does not emit carbon dioxide when burnt. The government considers it a next-generation fuel, along with hydrogen, in its efforts to reduce CO2 emissions.

Officials of the industry ministry, electric power companies and machinery makers compiled the plans on Monday.

They call for using 3 million tons of ammonia a year in 2030 by developing technology for burning the fuel together with coal.

They also plan to raise the use of ammonia to 30 million tons a year by 2050. That would be achieved through reliance on power plants that only burn ammonia.

In a related development, Japanese power company Jera has exchanged memorandums with Malaysian oil-and-gas giant Petronas to produce the fuel.

Jera is a joint venture between Tokyo Electric Power and Chubu Electric Power. It is Japan's largest thermal power-generation company.

The firm is planning to reduce the CO2 emission of its operations to virtually zero by 2050 by relying on ammonia and hydrogen.