German chemicals giant BASF will create a new subsidiary, BASF Renewable Energy, to supply its European sites and manage electricity trading activities.
BASF said its current renewables activities would be bundled into the new division as of 1 January, 2022.
It will focus on supplying the BASF Group in Europe with electricity from renewable energies, European electricity trading activities and provide global consulting and expertise on renewables for BASF and group companies.
The new unit will be based in Ludwigshafen, south west Germany, and will be managed by Horatio Evers, who was previously responsible for clean energy development at BASF.
BASF says it current uses around 9TWh of fossil-fuel derived electricity per year. It expects that by “gradually” replacing this electricity – both from its own generation facilities and via new power purchase agreements (PPAs) – it will procure “three to four times” as much renewables in order to meet its net zero goals.
BASF Renewable Energy is tasked with supplying these additional renewable electricity volumes in line with demand.
BASF has a target to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 25% by 2030 compared with a 2018 baseline, and to achieve net zero emissions by 2050.
The company notes that new renewables capacity is already lined up, including via its stake the Hollandse Kust Zuid wind farm with Vattenfall, and another 2-GW offshore wind farm planned in partnership with RWE in the German North Sea.
BASF has also signed its first long-term PPA for the supply of offshore wind in Europe with Ørsted, procuring 186 MW of output from the 900-MW Borkum Riffgrund 3 offshore wind farm, due to begin operation in 2025.
Meanwhile, BASF is also a major partner in a proposed carbon capture project at the Port of Antwerp, in Belgium.
“As the leading company in the chemical industry, we are already one of the largest industrial electricity consumers in Europe. Due to the conversion to renewable energy as well as the launch of new, low-emission production processes based on electricity, our demand will increase significantly in the future,” said BASF Renewable Energy managing director Horatio Evers.