White Paper on Norway's energy policy: Power for Change

Published under: Solberg's Government

Publisher Ministry of Petroleum and Energy

Today, the Norwegian government presented a White Paper on energy policy – Power for change – an energy policy towards 2030. The main message is that security of supply, consequences for climate and economic growth must be considered together to secure an efficient and climate friendly energy supply.

-          I am very pleased to launch this White Paper on energy policy. 17 years have passed since the Parliament last received a broad overview of the development, status and perspectives of our national energy supply, says Minister of Petroleum and Energy Tord Lien.

Since the last White Paper in 1999, the energy markets and the policies of the countries around us have changed considerably. The Paris agreement has strengthened the international commitment to enhance efforts on emission reductions and climate adaption.

-          Our renewable energy resources and a well-functioning energy sector are competitive advantages for Norway. An efficient energy market and access to reliable and clean renewable energy is crucial for a climate-friendly energy supply. Our energy policy will enable increased use of renewable power in new areas, says minister Lien.

The government wants the Norwegian energy supply to be the basis for continued growth and welfare. Accordingly, our energy policies focus on four areas:

Enhanced security of supply

The society's focus on security of supply is growing. The government aims to uphold a satisfactory security of supply also in the years to come. We want to make sure that market solutions enhance the flexibility of the energy system. We pursue a strengthened Nordic energy cooperation. The government wants a robust power transmission system on all levels, and will work for better coordination between transmission, consumption and production. New technology and the use of smart management systems will contribute to improved security of supply in the future.

Efficient production of renewables

Norway is blessed with huge renewable resources and the opportunity to make use of them. The government's energy policy should enable profitable production of renewable power in Norway.  The efforts in developing and using new technologies for renewable energy will continue. Stronger integration with other energy markets is important to maintain the value of Norwegian renewable resources. Therefore, the government aims to increase connections with European energy markets. The regulatory framework will be changed so that others than the state-owned TSO Statnett may own and operate interconnectors. To avoid reduced values of our existing renewable production, the government will not introduce new targets under the Green certificate system. We will also make the licensing process more efficient.

The government wants a long-term development of profitable wind power in Norway. The introduction of a national framework for wind power will contribute to dampen conflicts and contribute with appropriate choices of locating wind power.  

More efficient and climate-friendly use of energy

The government wants to alter the focus from supporting mature production technologies towards innovation and the development of new energy and climate solutions. Our national agency for the support of green energy and energy efficiency, Enova, is our main instrument in this work. Enova's overarching aims are reduction of climate emissions, strengthening security of energy supply and the development of technologies that in the long term contribute to lower climate emissions. The government has recently entrusted Enova with the responsibility of contributing to reduce climate emissions from transport. The development of new energy and climate technologies in the industrial sector will continue to be a main area of Enova's work. The government is proposing an ambitious national objective for energy efficiency.

Economic growth and value creation through efficient use of profitable renewable resources

The energy sector creates substantial values based on our renewable energy resources.

The use of renewable energy also enables value creation in other industries and sectors. The government will facilitate the development of our competitive advantages from deploying our renewable energy resources. The government proposes a new law that will enable industrial owners of hydropower to access predictable supplies in the future.

Future value creation based on our renewable resources is contingent on our ability for innovation and knowledge development. The government aims to achieve a smooth employment of tools from different institutions and innovation programs. We want to build on the strategy "Energy 21" which is jointly developed by the industry, research institutions and public authorities.