In the history of the state of the electricity day NRK . statement On August 15, Trond Geske pointed the finger at the NHO for being a promoter of foreign cables first, then ordering electricity subsidies for companies when electricity prices rose.
Much is true in Geske’s story about Norway as a country of energy and the values that hydropower has given us. A surplus of clean, renewable and affordable energy was and should remain a competitive advantage for Norwegian business and consumers. We totally agree with that.
But analysis of the acute energy crisis In Europe, which also affects Norway, is a mistake, and in my opinion also a traitor. Norway has had a power exchange with foreign countries since the 1960s, given security of supply and vulnerability in drought years. We have a total of 17 power cables overseas.
The last two cables increased the capacity and exposure of Germany and Great Britain, but not because of these cables the higher electricity prices in Norway, as Geske might think.
These cables aren’t the cause either To Germany, Great Britain, Denmark and the rest of Europe which hit record high prices. The reason for this is Russia’s throttling of gas supplies to Europe, which has created a global energy crisis not seen since the 1970s.
2022 is also a historically dry year in southern Norway, with little influx into reservoirs from melting snow and precipitation, meaning reservoir filling at the start of autumn and winter is the lowest in 20 years. This makes us more, not less, dependent on power connections abroad.
NHO agrees with Giske In this consideration of security of supply must carry significant weight, and support that we must now consider measures that increase supply security in Norway within the framework of the energy agreements we have with our European neighbours. There is no dispute here.
But today’s extraordinary energy crisis, which was neither predicted nor based on any analysis, is not the time to take drastic measures to change the energy market that has served us well for more than 30 years, or to cut off our electrical connections abroad. I don’t get Jesse defending that either.
Norway now enjoys historically high incomes From exporting gas to Europe at very high prices, as a result of Russia’s throttling of gas supplies. Gas is used, among other things, to produce electricity and heating in Europe, and higher gas prices are driving up electricity prices, which also affects Norway.
The acute energy crisis we are facing must be resolved by taking urgent measures to help households and businesses affected by high electricity prices, and to protect Norway’s security of energy supply.
The final verdict on foreign cables and the power system as a whole will have to be made later.
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