Statkraft opens Pålsbu Power Plant

09.10.2007 08.00 | pressrelease

Today sees the opening of Pålsbu Power Plant, which lies directly at the base of Pålsbu Dam in Nore og Uvdal. For the first time, power will be generated using the water that flows from Pålsbu Dam to the Tunhovd Fjord – enough energy to supply 1,000 households.

Today, Pålsbu Power Plant will be officially opened by Kirsten G. Hovda, Mayor of Nore og Uvdal municipality, and Arvid Grundekjøn, chair of Statkraft’s board of directors. Pålsbu Power Plant takes advantage of the old Pålsbu Dam’s drop, situated between Pålsbu and the Tunhovd Fjord in uppermost Numedalslågen. The facility will generate approximately 22 GWh of new, clean energy annually, and represents a prime example of environment-friendly modernisation of old hydropower facilities.

New power plant, old plans

The plans for this power plant have long existed, but only now have the financial and technological conditions made it possible to carry out the expansion. Previously, water was released from Pålsbu Dam into the Tunhovd Fjord without utilising the water’s energy. This expansion is in line with the authorities’ and Statkraft’s desire to modernise and expand existing hydropower facilities.

“Pålsbu Power Plant is a future-oriented project that exemplifies the new, environment-friendly way to utilise hydropower – it protects nature and is more efficient than before,” says Bård Mikkelsen, President and CEO of Statkraft. “This power plant clearly demonstrates that there is still much to be drawn from our clean and renewable hydropower sources.”

Aesthetics and environment were key elements in expansion

Architects designed the power station building with a heavy emphasis on adapting it optimally to the old concrete dam. The building is constructed of concrete sections; other building parts have kept their natural grey material colour. Seen from above, the building’s impeller shape evokes associations of rotation and thrust.

Pålsbu Power Plant is the first hydropower plant in Norway with environmentally adapted turbine and hydraulic oils. In connection with the cabling and re-laying of the power transmission lines from the power plant, several existing power poles in the area will be removed.

“We build and operate our facilities to provide society with the most possible energy with a minimum of negative impact on the environment,” remarked CEO Mikkelsen, “and Pålsbu Power Plant is visible evidence of that.”

The Statkraft Group is a leading player in Europe within renewable energy. The Group generates hydropower, wind power and district heating and constructs gas power plants in Norway and Germany. Statkraft is a major player on the European energy exchanges. In Norway the company supplies electricity and heat to around 600,000 customers through its shareholdings in other companies. In 2006 Statkraft recorded a profit after tax of NOK 6.3 billion, and employed more than 2,100 employees in nine countries. The world needs pure energy. Statkraft works to deliver this every day.