Norway has long placed an emphasis on environmental issues both through global cooperation as well as initiatives on the national, regional and local levels.
Intpow – for a renewable future
There is a major focus on renewable energy at the highest levels of Norwegian government and industry. In order to build on this present strength and future possibilities, INTPOW (Norwegian Renewable Energy Partners) was established early in 2009 in an initiative taken in close cooperation between the energy industry and Norwegian authorities.
Out of the darkness
It is perhaps the ultimate irony that a Nordic country known for its long dark winters should be a world leader in solar cell research. Contributor to The Financial Times, Valeria Criscione, explains how and why.
Tackling nitrous oxide – the bigger greenhouse gas threat
Yara is the world’s largest nitrogen fertiliser producer but is also at the forefront of greenhouse gas reduction through a new catalyst technology.
Norsk Hydro: how an aluminium giant pursues solutions to prevent climate change
Aluminium is known as an environmentally friendly metal, but production is energy intensive. Norsk Hydro has however developed a new technology that reduces the amount of energy needed to produce primary aluminium.
Hydropower - leading the way to a renewable future
Norway is a nation fuelled by hydropower; 99% of its electricity comes from hydropower generators. The result is that Norway has unrivalled expertise within the industry, and an international reputation commensurate to its status as the world’s fifth largest hydropower producer.
Wind power – the push offshore
Norway’s oil adventure began in the 1960s with the discovery of the Ekofisk field in the North Sea. Four decades later, the country is preparing to harvest its next great offshore energy resource: wind.
Protecting Norway’s natural riches - the new biodiversity act
Norway’s Environment and Development Minister, Erik Solheim, described the new proposed Nature Management Act as “the most important law on nature that has ever been proposed in Norway.” The historic Act is designed to protect the natural environment and proposes rules that also encompass sustainable use. The Act targets the loss of national and international natural diversity, on land and at sea. “We now propose a very modern Act which will give us the ability to fulfil our commitment to halt the loss of natural diversity,” says Solheim.
In the grassroots
One key to the success of the environmental efforts in Norway are efforts being made from government’s highest levels to the grassroots, people from all parts of the country working to preserve an ecological balance in their own local environments. Nordstrand is a suburb of Oslo, just outside of the city centre, and it is here that the environmental organization “La Nordstrand Puste” was founded by two local citizens, Sverre Aastorp and Helle Sviu.
Here comes the sun - the transformation of Norway's traditional industry
NorSun’s silicon wafer plant is situated side by side with Norsk Hydro’s carbon plant in Årdal – an attest to how the old economy is being transformed into the new, green economy of solar energy. What makes both industries similar is that they are both power intensive. Norway’s abundant hydro-power resources make it an ideal place to locate solar wafer production. What’s more the industrial mindset is already there.
Carbon capture & storage – Norway’s moon landing
The UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has estimated that carbon capture can amount to almost half of the emission cuts this century. The Norwegian Government has made it a priority to reduce CO2 emissions through carbon capture and storage in power plants such as Mongstad, which has been hailed by Norway’s prime minister as the technological equivalent to the moon landing for the US.
An active player in clean development mechanism projects
Negotiators of the Kyoto Protocol set up Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) as one of three market-based mechanisms to encourage the private sector and countries to curb greenhouse gas emissions. Norwegians are active at both ends, with Den Norske Veritas as the market leader in the validation of CDM projects worldwide and the Norwegian Ministry of Finance a NOK 7 billion customer of carbon credits from CDMs and joint initiatives.
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