First tanker in 20 months embarks to energy hungry Europe

LNG tanker “Arctic Voyager” shining under the Midnight Sun outside Hammerfest. (Thomas Nilsen/The Independent Barents Observer)

Norway’s role as a stable and predictable supplier of natural gas to Europe is pushed forward by dictator Vladimir Putin’s war on Ukraine and political pressure on EU member states. As country by country switch away or are cut off from Russian supplies, Norway’s gas export is set to rise by 8% in 2022.

This week, the first load of liquid natural gas in 20 months sails out from Hammerfest LNG on the coast to the Barents Sea.

“This is of great significance in a period when predictable and reliable supplies are highly important to many countries and customers,” said Irene Rummelhoff, executive vice president of Equinor.

Equinor brought the plant at Melkøya outside Hammerfest in northernmost Norway back online last week, after a fire in September 2020 forced a complete shutdown and challenging repairs.

Faring of associated gas will be frequent during the first start-up period. (Thomas Nilsen/The Independent Barents Observer)

Hammerfest LNG accounts for more than 5% of Norwegian gas export and is the only plant that can deliver gas by tankers instead of pipelines to Europe

The “Arctic Voyager“ has a capacity to carry about 140,000 cubic meters of LNG. That is equivalent to 1 TW of energy and takes about five days to produce at the plant outside Hammerfest. Right now, three other huge LNG tankers are waiting on the coast; the “Arctic Lady”, “Arctic Princess” and “Arctic Aurora”.

Related stories from around the North: 

Alaska: Alaska’s largest oil producer asks judge to block release of drilling info from NPR-A, Alaska Public Media

Canada: Tarquti Energy, Hydro-Quebec deal important step towards green energy for Nunavik, Inuit leaders say, Eye on the Arctic

Denmark/Greenland: New guideline launched for Arctic-specific risk assessment in shipping, Eye on the Arctic

Finland: Finland’s aging icebreaker fleet needs modernization, Yle News.

Thomas Nilsen, The Independent Barents Observer

For more news from the Barents region visit The Independent Barents Observer.

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