The Energy Transition Norway report describes DNV’s view of the most likely development of Norway’s energy future, and details the dynamics, challenges and opportunities ahead through to 2050. The forecast also provides a basis for assessing whether Norway is likely to meet its energy and climate-related targets.
We believe this provides valuable insight for the Federation of Norwegian Industries, Norwegian politicians and decision makers, and all stakeholders in the energy system.
- Norway has ambitious emissions reduction targets - but is not on track to meet them
Norway’s energy use already has low carbon intensity due to its hydropower-dominated electricity system. Thus, it will be challenging to achieve its enhanced nationally determined contribution under the Paris Agreement, as announced in February 2020. This NDC targets greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reductions of at least 50%, and towards 55%, by 2030 compared with 1990 levels. Our forecast shows Norway most likely achieving only a 23% reduction by 2030.
- Norway's energy system will remain unique compared with those of other countries
Norway’s energy system differs from most other countries’ in several ways. It has abundant natural energy resources and a relatively small population; a large energy export; and a power sector already among the most decarbonized globally. Norway is the world’s fourth largest gas exporter, the eleventh largest oil exporter, and almost 90% of its petroleum production is exported. We see its gas production remaining at present levels until around 2040 then declining gradually.
- Norway is well positioned for technology leadership in the green shift
While Norwegian production of gas and oil is forecast to continue, there are also strong growth markets where Norwegian industry and energy players have unique opportunities to play leading roles. Norway plays an important, global role in maritime transport and innovation. Norway has extensive experience and a lead in LNG, batteries, and hydrogen for domestic short-sea shipping. Extending this leadership into research and piloting and development of low- and zero-carbon fuels and related infrastructures for deep-sea shipping is a promising opportunity. Norway is also well positioned for a leading role in floating offshore wind power production. With its offshore gas and oil experience, Norway has competence in subsea, anchoring, floaters and much of what is needed to take part in developing and scaling floating offshore wind. Decarbonizing natural gas will be hugely important to secure the value of Norwegian gas and its industrial base.
- Political decisiveness is crucial to meet targets and to unleash opportunities
Technological progress enables decarbonization. However, step-changes tend to rely on decisive policy intervention. Individual behavioural change is happening due to the COVID-19 pandemic but will have limited long-term impact unless further incentivized or forced. Even in combination, technology advances, finance sector support, and pandemic-related behavioural shifts are insufficient to achieve Norway’s decarbonization targets. Policy will continue to be pivotal in setting the direction and route of change and to send clear signals to energy-sector stakeholders. Targeted policies and their effective implementation will be decisive for reaching emissions-reduction targets.