Agreement between Sør-Fosen Sijte and Fosen Vind

The mediation between the Sør-Fosen Sijte reindeer herding district and Fosen Vind has resulted in the parties entering into an amicable agreement.

Picture of the Minister of Petroleum and Energy together with both parties in the Fosen-case.
From the left: CEO of Fosen Vind, Tom Kristian Larsen , leader of the Sør-Fosen Sijte, Leif Arne Jåma, and Minister of Petroleum and Energy, Terje Aasland. Credit: Norwegian Ministry of Petroleum and Energy.

In April 2023, the Ministry of Petroleum and Energy initiated a mediation process to resolve the case. The mediations were led by National Mediator Mats Ruland, along with District Court Judge Hanne Sofie Bjelland and reindeer herder Tom Kristian Lifjell. It is this process that has now led to an agreement between the parties at Sør-Fosen.

’The Fosen case has been challenging for all parties. There is no doubt that the case has been most burdensome for the families engaged in reindeer herding at Fosen. They have had to live with this conflict for many years. I am therefore pleased that the parties and the state, through the mediation process, have arrived at a mutually agreed, good, and forward-looking solution. My hope is that this will enable new generations to continue reindeer herding at Fosen’, said Minister of Petroleum and Energy Terje Aasland.

’It feels good to bring closure to a long and unpredictable situation. The agreement provides predictability and secures reindeer herding at Sør-Fosen for generations. Through the agreement, we are assured additional grazing land and veto power over further wind power after the concession period ends. We look forward to positive challenges and working towards a good Sami reindeer herding activity. Now it's up to the politicians to ensure that this doesn't happen again. We have greatly appreciated the support we have received through the protests, and the engagement from the Norwegian people, especially from the Sami community’, said Leif Arne Jåma, leader of the Sør-Fosen Sijte.

’Fosen Vind has great respect for the fact that the Sør-Fosen Sijte has endured a very difficult situation for a long time, and that the process has been demanding and exhausting. We are therefore pleased that we, together with the Sør-Fosen Sijte and the state, and with good help from the mediation team, have now reached an agreement that safeguards the rights of the reindeer owners. The agreement provides the sijte with security for continued operations, also for future generations’, said CEO Tom Kristian Larsen of Fosen Vind.

Content of the Agreement

The agreement aims to ensure continued reindeer herding, mitigate operational disadvantages, and provide a basis for future cultural practices for the Sør-Fosen Sijte from a generational perspective.

Measures will be taken to secure that the Sør-Fosen Sijte can utilise additional land for winter grazing outside the Fosen reindeer herding district. The potential area must be suitable for winter grazing and be within an acceptable transport distance from Sør-Fosen. At the request of the parties, the state has taken responsibility for conducting a process aimed at securing such additional land. The aim is that a grazing area will be available for the Sør-Fosen Sijte in the winter of 2026/27.

The Sør-Fosen Sijte consents to Fosen Vind being allowed to continue using the area at Storheia for wind power production throughout the concession period. After the concession period expires, it has been agreed that the Sør-Fosen Sijte will have the right to veto further operation of the Storheia wind power plant. This means that the concession holders cannot apply for an extension or renewal of the concession without the consent of the Sør-Fosen Sijte.

At the same time, Fosen Vind DA commits to providing a significant financial contribution for measures supporting reindeer herding in the Sør-Fosen Sijte.

In March, the government apologized to the reindeer herding communities at Fosen for the human rights violation that the Supreme Court found the concession decisions to constitute. According to the parties and the ministry's assessment, the agreement now reached does not constitute a violation of Article 27 of the UN Convention on Civil and Political Rights.

Based on the agreement reached between the parties, the ministry assesses that there is no basis for reversing the concession decision for the Storheia Wind Farm. The ministry therefore halts the reversal process regarding this case.

Regarding the mediation efforts at Nord-Fosen between the Nord-Fosen Siida and the wind company Roan Vind, an agreement has not yet been reached. The government still believes that the best solution for the parties would be to reach an amicable agreement here as well. If it is not possible to reach an agreement, the state must proceed with the work on a reversal decision in the case.


In 2010, the Norwegian Water Resources and Energy Directorate issued licences for Roan and Storheia windfarms on the Fosen penisula, among others. These windfarms are located within the Fosen grazing district, where Sør-Fosen sijte and Nord-Fosen siida practice reindeer husbandry. The herders claimed that the construction interfered with their right to enjoy their own culture. This was rejected by the Ministry of Petroleum and Energy in 2013. The issue was brought before the courts. Fosen Vind DA was nonetheless permitted to start the construction, and the windfarms were ready in 2019 and 2020, respectively. They are part of the largest onshore wind power project in Europe.