8 Best Green Ammonia Stocks: How To Invest in “The Fuel of the Future”

Green ammonia has huge potential as a transport fuel of the future. A chemical compound, ammonia made using clean energy could power hard-to-decarbonize sectors like shipping. Learn what companies are producing green ammonia today.

Anna Ng   Updated April 15th, 2022

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What is green ammonia?

  • Today, ammonia is mostly used as fertilizer, but it can also be a fuel
  • Ammonia can be produced using clean energy
  • Ammonia can help decarbonize the carbon-intensive shipping industry

Ammonia, which is mainly used as fertilizer for crops, is the second most-produced chemical globally. A compound of hydrogen and nitrogen, ammonia is easy to liquefy and transport. However, ammonia is made using the HaberBosch method, which requires a lot of energy. Most of that energy comes from natural gas or coal. As a result, ammonia production represents around 2% of global CO2 emissions.

Thankfully, ammonia could also be produced using renewables, which would make it “green.” “Blue ammonia,” made with natural gas but with CO2 captured and stored, is not as good but better than conventional ammonia.

Carbon-free, green ammonia has huge potential beyond fertilizer. Used as fuel, it could help decarbonize shipping, air transportation and even trucking.

Shipping, which produces 3% of global CO2 emissions, is especially hard to decarbonize. If no action is taken, emissions from shipping could grow by 250% by 2050, according to the International Maritime Organization. 85% of those emissions come from bulk carriers, oil tankers and container ships.

Cargo vessels are powered by the polluting bunker fuel, yet they are too heavy to be powered by batteries. Green ammonia – which doesn’t generate carbon emissions – could be used as a shipping fuel. It can be easily liquefied, stored and burned by engines. Besides, ammonia holds twice as much energy as hydrogen and nine times as much as lithium-ion batteries.

How to invest in green ammonia

There is no easy way of investing in green ammonia. Most large companies with green ammonia businesses generate most of their revenue from something else. Pure-play green ammonia companies are extremely speculative micro-cap investments. Here is the overview of what you can invest in.

Green ammonia stock list

  • CF Industries (CF)
  • Nel ASA (NLLSF)
  • Air Products and Chemicals Inc (APD)
  • Linde (LIN)
  • Yara International ASA (YARIY)
  • KBR Inc (KBR)
  • FuelPositive Corp (NHHHF)
  • AmmPower Corp (AMMPF)

Read more about each company.

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1. CF Industries (CF)

  • Market capitalization: $22.8 billion
  • 2022 return: 54%

Illinois-based CF Industries is the largest ammonia manufacturer in the world. The company has over $20 billion in market cap and $6.5 billion in annual sales. CF has manufacturing facilities in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom.

Of course, most ammonia they produce is “grey,” i.e., made using natural gas. Although it’s not an obvious environmental stock, CF has recognized the shift to clean energy and is working on blue and green ammonia projects.

The company has recently announced the largest green ammonia project in the United States, a 20 MW plant to be built in Donaldsonville, Louisiana. Construction has already started and is expected to finish in 2023. Given its expertise in producing conventional ammonia, CF Industries may be better positioned to capture this market than pure-play startups.

2. Nel ASA (NLLSF)

  • Market capitalization: $2.7 billion
  • 2022 return: -2%

Norway-based Nel ASA makes hydrogen electrolyzers, which can derive hydrogen from water, and fueling stations. Nel’s electrolyzers were initially designed for ammonia production, given that the ammonia/fertilizer industry is the biggest consumer of hydrogen in the world. Nel has recently signed an MOU with Haldor Topsoe to offer customers an end-to-end green ammonia solution. This clean energy company has around $85 million in annual revenues.

3. Air Products and Chemicals Inc (APD)

  • Market capitalization: $54.7 billion
  • 2022 return: -17%

Industrial gas giant Air Products and Chemicals provides essential industrial gases like hydrogen and nitrogen, supplies liquefied natural gas technology, and builds various gasification and carbon capture projects. The company has over 800 facilities worldwide and generates over $10 billion in annual sales.

APD has also been getting into carbon-free or green hydrogen and ammonia production. The company has recently announced a $5 billion joint investment into the world’s largest green hydrogen and ammonia project. Located in NEOM, Saudi Arabia, the project is a green ammonia production facility powered by renewables. The facility is expected to produce over 1 million tons of ammonia per year. Completion is due in 2025.

And although most of APD’s revenue comes from industrial gases, the company is very well-positioned to capitalize on the growth in the market for green ammonia.

4. Linde (LIN)

  • Market capitalization: $162 billion
  • 2022 return: -6%

The world’s largest supplier of industrial gases, Linde plc produces gases like oxygen, nitrogen and hydrogen. They also build and design gasification equipment, including hydrogen plants.

Although green ammonia is not a material part of Linde’s business today, the company has recently announced a partnership with Yara, a fertilizer manufacturer. They will build a 24 MW green ammonia production facility in Norway. The project seeks to show that ammonia produced using renewables can reduce carbon emissions from fertilizer manufacturing. Linde is also planning a solar-powered ammonia manufacturing facility in South Africa.

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5. Yara International ASA (YARIY)

  • Market capitalization: $14.5 billion
  • 2022 return: 8%

Norway-based Yara International is a leading fertilizer manufacturer, producing fertilizers like ammonia, urea, nitrates, and more. It is also the world’s second-largest ammonia producer. Although fertilizer manufacturing has so far been very carbon-intensive, Yara has created a “Clean Ammonia” unit, focusing on green and blue ammonia. The unit operates 11 ships and 18 ammonia terminals around the world.

Yara is working on a project to produce clean ammonia at its plant in Porsgrunn, Norway, which is currently powered by natural gas. Once the decarbonization of the plant is complete, the project will save 800,000 tons of CO2 each year. Yara also plans to install electrolyzers to make green ammonia at its plant in Pilbara, Australia.

6. KBR Inc (KBR)

  • Market capitalization: $7.9 billion
  • 2022 return: 17%

KBR delivers science, engineering, and technology solutions to governments and businesses worldwide. The company has worked with the ammonia industry for over 50 years, helping design, build, and maintain fertilizer facilities. KBR has a roughly 50% share of licensed capacity in ammonia technology, having licensed, engineered, or constructed 244 ammonia plants since 1943.

More recently, KBR has been investing in its advisory and consulting business focused on the energy transition. They offer designs for green and blue ammonia facilities and have been selected as the green technology partner for Oman’s green ammonia project.

7. FuelPositive Corp (NHHHF)

  • Market capitalization: 50 million CAD
  • 2022 return: -23%

FuelPositive is a micro-cap Canadian company focused on producing sustainable and commercially viable green ammonia. The ammonia could be used across sectors, such as fertilizers, transport, fuel cells, grid storage, and more.

FuelPositive’s technology takes air, water, and renewable electricity to create pure ammonia. This pre-revenue startup is currently building modular green ammonia production prototypes, with pilot projects expected throughout 2022. It is hard to know for sure if the company’s technology will work, so the stock is super-risky.

8. AmmPower Corp (AMMPF)

  • Market capitalization: 32 million CAD
  • 2022 return: -16%

Another micro-cap Canadian company, AmmPower is engaged in green ammonia production and lithium exploration. According to the company, they successfully produced green ammonia in a lab setting in November 2021 and will target the marine, rail and large volume cargo sectors.

The company has signed a green ammonia facility MOU with Porto Central, Brazil, an LOI with the Port of South Louisiana and is in discussions with several ports.

Aside from green ammonia, AmmPower has a lithium exploration business. Lithium, a metal found in electric car batteries and battery storage, is critical for the clean energy transition. AmmPower owns a lithium exploration property in Canada.

However, AmmPower is not generating revenue, and this micro-cap stock is highly speculative.

🔔 Learn about investing in ammonia’s sibling, green hydrogen.

What are the cons of green ammonia?

Nearly all ammonia produced today is “grey,” not “green.” Making ammonia requires a lot of energy: green ammonia would need huge amounts of renewables like wind and solar, which would compete with other uses.

The process would also be costly. According to some estimates, green ammonia will cost two to four times as much as conventional ammonia.

Green ammonia is also a toxic, hazardous chemical, and spills would be devastating. But, given that ammonia is already widely used, there is an established system for transporting and storing it.

Finally, most projects to make green ammonia have done so on a small scale. Ship engines don’t yet run on ammonia, even though there is interest from shipping companies. But that may be set to change as industry investment rises and more companies and countries jump on board.

NOT INVESTMENT ADVICE. The content is for informational purposes only; you should not construe any such information as investment advice.

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