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A good 2023, but challenges with energy

It has been a good year with smooth operations and significant activity in the industrial park.
Portrait of a man wearing yellow jacket and a white helmet, industrial park below in background. Sverre Gotaas, CEO of Herøya Industripark AS, summarises 2023 as a good year for the industrial park.

Sverre Gotaas, CEO of Herøya Industripark AS, looks back on 2023, a year with much activity and great effort from the employees of the industrial park company.

"There has been a lot to do, and those who are here are doing an excellent job for the companies in the industrial park.

Significant activity and optimism

"Expansions are a keyword," says Gotaas. "We know that several, both smaller and larger companies in Herøya, have plans for changes and expansions of production facilities and production areas. So there is relatively high optimism among the companies here in the industrial park. That is important for us going forward in the year."


portrait of man, smiling, posing,  wearing white helmet and goggles, standing in a procuction hall.
Expanding: Plant Manager Ragnar Johnsson is looking forward to welcoming 25 new employees to Nel's plant at Herøya.

Expansions at Nel, starting a new production line in 2024 at Herøya.

Carbon capture and hydrogen

Efforts are being made towards carbon capture and a catapult centre for testing Hydrogen infrastructure. "Projects crucial for the region, especially regarding carbon capture and hydrogen, are progressing very well," says Gotaas.

The Katapult Node Telemark and Grenland Industrial Carbon Capture and Storage (GICCS), led by Powered by Telemark, are among the most important initiatives for the region at the moment, according to Gotaas.

"Finding solutions to capture all carbon dioxide emissions from the industry and making test infrastructure for hydrogen available is something I strongly believe in. I can see that research, along with the research park and SINTEF here at Herøya, is beginning to yield results. My perception is that there is a lower threshold for adopting R&D than before, especially for companies that do not have their own R&D department."


four people walking towards camera, corridor with glass walls, posing, smiling
"If we are to meet the climate goals on time, we must reduce CO2 emissions, and we recommend carbon capture," say from left Anette Mathisen, Kristian L. Aas and Sumudu Karunarathna, all Industrial Process Design, SINTEF, at Herøya Forskningspark, and Magnar Bakke, project leader Grenland Industrial Carbon Capture and Storage (GICCS).

It is possible to reduce CO2 emissions by and additional 1 million tonnes.


"Several hydrogen projects have not taken off in Norway. Why are you investing in a test facility for hydrogen?"

"We look at it differently. Test centers are primarily aimed at companies with products to sell. Two of the world's largest producers of electrolysers, HydrogenPro and NEL, are located at Herøya. They need to have their equipment tested over an extended period in a safe testing environment, and we intend to contribute to that," says Gotaas.

"Even though it may seem like Norway has slowed down a bit, the world has not slowed down. With a significant amount of hydrogen handling already happening here at Herøya, we believe that the chances are higher for more hydrogen projects to come here than in many other places."


four people high-five, yellow jackets, white helmets, production plant area.
Milestone: The world's first and largest hydrogen plant is now being installed in Yara's rehabilitated pilot hall at Herøya in Porsgrunn. From left Michael Hoffmann, Linde, Stein Rune Johansen, Bilfinger, Madalina Hoffmann, Linde and Reidar Tveit, Yara.

Yara's and the world's largest and first green hydrogen pilot plant is being built at Herøya.

Energy is a major challenge

Gotaas is concerned about the energy situation.
"Energy is the big challenge," he says. "Statnett has indicated that there won't be much improvement until they've expanded the power grid in the region, which won't happen until at least 2030. So the power issue is real throughout southeastern Norway. It creates problems for projects and companies looking to establish themselves here. We are putting a lot of energy into finding solutions to this," says Gotaas. He contributes, along with others, in various forums.

More activites from 2023

three men standing near gate to industrial park, posing, smiling
Welcome to Herøya: from left, Skjalg Aasland, Director of Market and Business Development, welcomes Sindre Hassfjell, CTO, and Brede Ellingsæter, CFO, of Thor Medical ASA to Herøya.
Thor Medical ASA has signed an agreement to establish pilot facilities at Herøya and will commence the planning process this autumn.
two men, portrait, posing, outside, testing facilities with pipes and fencing in background.
A new research rig is being built next to Equinor's existing multiphase rig at Herøya. Here, Eirik Lunde, manager of Equinor's lab and test facilities, and Tor Kjeldby, task lead in flow assurance, are in front of today's multiphase rig and the R&D flagship, built in Herøya Research Park in 1992.
Equinor's research center in Herøya Research Park is receiving 130 million NOK for a new major expansion.
six people standing in stairs, leaning onto the rails, all wearing yellow jackets, posing, outside entrance to research park
Team members in Hydros HalZero-project at Herøya Forskningspark: from left Bjørnar Gjesdal, Christian Berg, Malin Alette Bjørkelund Lervåg, Vasan Sivalingam, Erik Dørhellen and Georg Voss. Photo: Ole Bjørn Ulsnæs.
Hydro is developing a completely new production process for primary aluminium, HalZero, which emits oxygen instead of CO2.
two men, wearing PPE, posing, outside production plant,
Collaborators: INEOS Inovyn and the water treatment technology company Sterner in Porsgrunn are constructing a new wastewater facility at the PVC plant at Herøya. On the right, Morten Sundbakk, project manager at INEOS Inovyn and Trond Dahlen, project manager at Sterner.
INEOS Inovyn is investing over 60 million NOKs in a new wastwater treatment plant at the PVC plant, designed for production expansions at Herøya.
five persons standing near a wall covered with company logoes, in a reception area-
The partners of Friar Venture: from left Audun Mogen, Telemark Utviklingsfond, Tryggve Mo fra Sparebanken Sør, Espen Kjeldsen, Friar Venture/Skagerak Capital, Karoline Yuzer, Skagerak Capital, and Eskild Stenhaug, Sparebankstiftelsen Sparebanken Sør. Photo: Jørn Roar Bamle
Skagerak Capital, in collaboration with board members of Powered by Telemark and Proventia, has been working to establish a regional commercial growth fund for Telemark and Vestfold. Today they launched Friar Venture.
four persons wearing PPE, posing, standing close to a grey concrete wall, indoors.
Thanks for a successful project: from right, Sissel Nybro, project manager at Herøya Industripark AS, and hired project manager Merethe Fallmyr at A.L. Høyer, thank the contractor Mynd, from left Thomas Kaasa Søndbø and Mats Asdahl for the extensive project execution and on-time delivery.
Building 25 has undergone a major makeover, and it is now a sustainable and energy-efficient office building.

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