July 19, 2018 / 2:52 PM / a month ago

Norway's Statkraft to add more wind, solar to energy strategy

OSLO, July 19 (Reuters) - Norwegian state-owned utility Statkraft said on Thursday it would generate more onshore wind and solar power as part of its long-term energy strategy now that both renewable energy sources have become cost competitive.

Statkraft, which produces electricity mostly from hydropower dams, will also work on exploring options to use electrolysis-produced hydrogen as a renewable fuel solution for shipping, transport and industry.

“Onshore wind is now profitable without subsidies in Norway and together with solar power they are very cost competitive renewable options... We are updating our strategy to make them integral parts,” chief executive Christian Rynning-Toennesen told a news conference.

Rynning-Toennesen said the company will give more details of how much of Statkraft’s energy mix each renewable energy technology is expected to take in September.

He said the company’s hydrogen ambitions are at a research and development stage, but it was choosing the electrolysis production method as more environmentally friendly than a natural gas alternative.

“Even though producing hydrogen from natural gas can be cheaper, we are a renewable energy company and injecting the CO2 would make it a costlier option,” he said.

Statkraft is also in talks with “specific companies” to build large data centres in Telemark and Sanderfjord areas in southern Norway, said its CEO. (Reporting by Lefteris Karagiannopoulos; Editing by Kirsten Donovan)

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