Prime Minister Erna Solberg laid down the foundation stone for the Northern Lights CCS facility on the western coast of Norway. This is part of the Norwegian full-scale carbon capture and storage project (the “Longship” project). Below is the Prime Minister’s speech.
Climate change is one of the greatest challenges of our time. If the world is to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement, it is crucial that we are able to cut greenhouse gas emissions.
The government will cut emissions in a way that transforms Norway into a low-emission society and at the same time facilitates green, sustainable growth. Which provides security, welfare and jobs. We will cut emissions, not development.
Carbon capture and storage is an important part of our efforts to cut emissions. And laying the foundation stone here today is an important milestone in the work that has begun.
Last year, we launched Longship, the largest climate project ever in Norwegian industry. The project will contribute to the world reaching the climate goals, and at the same time create jobs and develop industry in Norway.
It is no secret that the fight against climate change will demand a lot of us. It costs to cut emissions, and it is estimated that the state will spend close to NOK 17 billion on the work with Longship.
It is a huge investment, but it will cost even more if we do not.
With Longship, we are at the forefront of developing carbon capture and storage. And hopefully our European neighbours will also use the CO2 storage facility.
We know that there is a good dialogue with potential customers.
Several memorandums of understanding have been signed, and feasibility studies are being carried out.
This shows a lot of promise.
The building for which we are laying the foundation stone today may not be very large – but it will be of great significance.
It will contain both office spaces and will function as an operations centre for the facility.
Not only is this convenient – it will also bring together the experience and expertise of all the bright minds who work on this project.
The building will also be a visitor centre.
It will be able to receive the public, and not least possible customers – to show what Northern Lights has to offer.
The foundation stone we are laying down today is physical proof that the Longship project so far is on track.
You all deserve praise for that.
Many have contributed with a little memory in this box that symbolizes the foundation stone.
My contribution is a copy of the white paper that laid the basis for deciding this entire project.
Finally, I would like to thank all of you who contribute to the largest climate project in Norwegian industrial history.
Good luck and congratulations!