Norway won’t stop searching for oil

Top Norwegian politicians are defying calls from the International Energy Agency (IEA) to halt more investment in new oil fields. Both the Conservatives and the Labour Party say they still don’t see any reason to revise oil policy, while a string of climate and environmental advocates suggest the political leaders are simply in denial mode. […]

Erna: ‘No plans to change oil policy’

Prime Minister Erna Solberg has been taking part in this week’s virtual “Leaders Summit on Climate” at the invitation of new US President Joe Biden. He’s called for a global halt to oil drilling in the Arctic, but Solberg has no intention of ending Norway’s own Arctic oil exploration and production. “We have no plans […]

Cargo ship adrift in stormy seas

Norwegian officials were worrying about serious environmental damage after a Dutch cargo ship floundered in stormy seas off Ålesund on Monday and then lost power. All 12 crew members have since been rescued and the vessel remained adrift on Tuesday, with 350 tons of heavy oil and 50 tons of diesel on board as it […]

Greens fade after alienating voters

NEWS ANALYSIS: Radical politics on both the climate and social fronts have cut the popularity of Norway’s Green Party by more than half in Oslo, arguably its most important election district. As the party gathered over the weekend for its annual national meeting, there was no sign of remorse or worry among party leadership but […]

‘Arrogant’ oil chiefs face more grilling

Some of Norway’s most powerful oil chiefs, both past and present, have been called in to a new disciplinary hearing in Parliament this month. Top officials at state controlled oil company Equinor and the government oil ministry face more grilling after the state Auditor General referred to them as both “arrogant” and “egotistical.” The unflattering […]

Thin ice killed an environmental activist

UPDATED: Norwegian environmentalists were mourning the death this week of Kurt Oddekalv, long one of the country’s most high-profile and radical amongst them. Oddekalv was often referred to as an environmental “warrior.” His body was recovered by search and rescue crews after alarms were sounded late Monday that someone may have gone through the ice […]

‘Master plan’ for climate draws flak

The Norwegian government rolled out its new “master plan” for meeting climate goals on Friday, just a day after state meteorologists confirmed that last year was Norway’s warmest ever. The plan for cutting the emissions blamed for climate change met an immediate storm of criticism, but also some praise. Opposition parties complained that the government’s […]

Arctic oil prevails over ‘The People’

Norway’s Supreme Court (Høyesterett) ruled in favour of the state on Tuesday in a long-running landmark case billed as pitting “The People vs Arctic Oil.” In this case, the state was not “The People” but instead the government-approved Arctic oil operations that once again won over Norwegians’ alleged constitutional rights to a healthy environment. It marked […]

Norway no longer ‘best place to live’

NEWS ANALYSIS: Oil has long fueled Norway’s hugely successful welfare state, but now it’s helped knock the country off the top of the UN’s annual list of the world’s best places to live, when adjusted for “planetary pressures.” The UN is now taking countries’ carbon footprints and their impact on consumption into account, and both are […]

Equinor’s refinery ‘leaking for years’

Norwegian state oil company Equinor is having to deal with even more bad news, following release of an internal report on chronic leaks from its sprawling refinery at Mongstad on Norway’s west coast. Equinor now risks criminal charges from state environmental authorities, and admits to not knowing how much oil has leaked into the ground […]