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Engineering & Construction


Large projects

Oxygen, nitrogen and hydrogen

Climate objectives

Air Liquide is taking actions

At the end of November 2018, Air Liquide announced its 2025 Climate Objectives. As part of this global approach, the Group takes active measures for the climate in its operations, with its customers and ecosystems by offering low-carbon solutions.

Taking action within the company

In 2019, the carbon intensity (a) is 4.6, which represents a 27% reduction compared to the 2015 carbon intensity (6.3).In its production, distribution and services activities, Air Liquide is committed to reducing its carbon intensity (a) by 30% by 2025, based on 2015 emissions.

Examples of actions carried out in 2019

  • Air Liquide, the Durance, Luberon, Verdon urban area (DLVA) and ENGIE sign a cooperation agreement to develop the “HyGreen Provence” project which aims at producing, storing, and distributing green hydrogen

    Initiated in 2017, “HyGreen Provence” should make it possible to develop and validate the technico-economic conditions for the production of 1,300 GWh of solar electricity, equivalent to the annual residential consumption of about 450,000 people, together with the production of renewable hydrogen on an industrial scale through water electrolysis. The project will be developed in several stages with the first deliverables envisaged by the end of 2021 and a possible final stage in 2027. In the long term, several tens of thousands of metric tons of renewable hydrogen could be produced in this way every year to meet a very broad spectrum of uses.

  • In Canada, Air Liquide is investing to improve the efficiency of the Hamilton ASU and reduce its CO2 emissions.

    The Group is investing 5.8 million euros to install a new nitrogen compressor, which will replace the current set up of five compressors. This should reduce the electric consumption of the site by some 2 MW, which would lead to annual energy savings (of around 1 million dollars per year) and a reduction in indirect CO2 emissions of around 1,350 tons per year.

  • A lower environmental impact for the transportation of bulk and cylinder products

    As part of its approach of reducing its carbon footprint on bulk and cylinder products, the Group has asked its carriers to convert their fleet of trucks to alternative fuels. This trust-based relationship has, for example, enabled near 40% of trucks in Spain and Portugal to be converted to natural gas, which is currently the best alternative fuel in these countries.

Taking actions with customers

With its customers, the Group is committed to working towards a clean and sustainable industry. Thanks to its essential molecules management (oxygen, hydrogen, carbon dioxide…) and the in-depth knowledge of its customers’ processes, Air Liquide offers technologies which allow them to improve the energy efficiency of their industrial processes and reduce their emissions.


Examples of actions carried out in 2019

  • Customer gas supply outsourcing contracts

    In 2019, Air Liquide signed a new long-term contract with Pemex Transformación Industrial, a subsidiary of national oil and gas company Petróleos Mexicanos (PEMEX), for the hydrogen supply of the PEMEX refinery located in Tula de Allende (State of Hidalgo) in central Mexico. With an investment of 50 million euros for the acquisition and optimization of an existing hydrogen production unit, this contract will enable Air Liquide to strengthen its presence in central Mexico while improving the energy efficiency of these units.

    Another example in Kazakhstan where, under a new long-term agreement with Kazakhstan Petrochemical Industries (KPI), Air Liquide Munay Tech Gases will build, own and operate a new nitrogen unit in the growing chemical basin of Karabatan, close to the Atyrau refinery.

  • Air Liquide and thyssenkrupp Steel, a global leader in rolled flat carbon steel, join forces in a pioneering project to produce low-carbon steel

    For the first time, hydrogen will be injected on a large scale to partially replace pulverized coal in blast furnaces during steel production.

    Air Liquide will ensure a stable supply of hydrogen from its 200-km pipeline network in the Rhine-Ruhr area. This solution will be implemented at one of the blast furnaces in thyssenkrupp’s integrated steel mills at the Duisburg site in Germany. Testing began at the end of 2019. thyssenkrupp aims to reduce CO2 emissions from the steel production process by up to 20% once this solution is rolled out to all of the site’s blast furnaces.

  • Air Liquide partners with ArcelorMittal in the first industrial scale plant on a pilot project to reduce carbon emissions from the production of steel and recycle them into advanced bioethanol

    As part of this project, Air Liquide Engineering & Construction will provide a technological solution that purifies offgas coming from the blast furnace. These gases will then be injected into a bioreactor to produce bioethanol. This technology leverages Air Liquide’s extensive know-how and illustrates its capacity to develop sustainable solutions supporting its customers in the steel industry to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

    Its implementation at ArcelorMittal’s steel plant in Ghent, Belgium, will make it the first European industrial scale demonstration plant to produce bioethanol from waste gases from the steelmaking process. Construction of the facility is underway and it should be operational at the end of 2020. In the long term, the site should produce 80 million liters of bioethanol per year.

  • Air Liquide is collaborating with Equinor and its partners (Shell and Total) on the Northern Lights project, a CO2 capture and storage project

    This project is aimed at developing offshore CO2 storage on the Norwegian Continental Shelf and has the potential to be the first storage site in the world to receive CO2 from industrial sources in several European countries. Under this memorandum of understanding, the parties will explore the possibility of cooperating in Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) development, which also includes CO2 capture, liquefaction, and transportation to an offshore natural reservoir.

Taking action for ecosystems

With ecosystems, via an active dialogue with a range of players (public authorities, industrial partners, NGOs, etc.), Air Liquide contributes to the development of a low-carbon society, in particular by developing biomethane for industry and transport and by promoting hydrogen which, in terms of both mobility and energy, will play a key role in the energy transition and the fight against climate change.

Examples of actions carried out in 2019

  • Air Liquide and Sinopec (China Petroleum & Chemical Corp.) signed in Beijing, in the presence of Emmanuel Macron, President of the French Republic, and Xi Jinping, President of the People's Republic of China, a memorandum of understanding to help accelerate the deployment of hydrogen mobility solutions in China.

    The leaders of Air Liquide and Sinopec have agreed to consider the development of a network dedicated to hydrogen mobility and the improvement of the regulatory framework essential to the development of hydrogen energy in China, the world's largest mobility market.

    As part of this agreement, Air Liquide will bring to Sinopec its expertise in the hydrogen supply chain, from production to storage and distribution, in order to provide competitive hydrogen supply solutions to the Chinese clean mobility market.

  • Air Liquide makes a strategic investment in the production of decarbonated hydrogen by electrolysis

    Air Liquide announces that it has acquired an 18.6% stake in the capital of the Canadian company Hydrogenics Corporation, a specialist in electrolysis hydrogen production equipment and fuel cells. This strategic operation, which corresponds to an investment of 20.5 million US dollars (18 million euros), enables the Group to reaffirm its long-term commitment to the hydrogen energy markets and its ambition to be a major player in the supply of decarbonated hydrogen, particularly for industry and mobility markets.

  • Hydrogen Council

    Launched at the World Economic Forum in Davos in early 2017, the Hydrogen Council is the first global initiative of its kind to show that hydrogen is one of the key solutions for the energy transition. The Council is currently composed of more than 81 members, including Air Liquide. The initiative is growing rapidly with 22 new members, including many investors, joining the Hydrogen Council.

    Deployed on a large scale, hydrogen could account for nearly one-fifth of the total energy consumed by 2050. This would reduce annual CO2 emissions by about 6 gigatonnes from current levels and contribute to 20% of the reduction required to limit global warming to 2°C by 2100.

    Hydrogen could generate a turnover of US$2.5 trillion and create more than 30 million jobs by 2050.

Climate initiatives

In July 2019, the Group joined the Science‑Based Targets (SBT) initiative, a label created by a coalition of stakeholders committed to environmental issues. The Science-Based Target initiative provides companies with a methodology for setting a GHG emissions reduction target based on climate science and in line with a 2°C or below scenario.