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Energi21 is the Norwegian national strategy for research, development, demonstration and commercialisation of new energy technology. It is the Ministry of Petroleum and Energy’s permanent strategic body for research, development and demonstration in the energy sector.

The Sheringham Shoal Offshore Wind Farm off the east coast of England can generate 317 MW. (Photo: Statoil)

Energi21 is the Ministry of Petroleum and Energy’s permanent strategic body for research, development and demonstration in the energy sector.

The main purpose of the Energi21 strategy reports is to provide the Ministry of Petroleum and Energy with recommendations on future strategic priority areas for efforts to develop new climate-friendly, environment-friendly solutions in the energy sphere.

The Energi21 strategy documents are drawn up in cooperation with trade and industry, academia and the relevant authorities.

The guiding principles for national and international strategies in the energy sphere revolve around the need to address climate challenges and safeguard both security of energy supply and competitiveness. These factors, together with assessment of the potential to meet targets and of Norway’s national competitive advantages, form the basis for the recommended strategic priority areas and proposed measures.

Recommendations in the 2018 strategy

Energy systems will be undergoing radical changes in the years ahead. Rapid developments are taking place in a number of climate-friendly energy technologies.

Energy systems are becoming more digitalised, integrated and complex – and substantial restructuring is called for in order to meet national and international targets for sustainability and greenhouse gas reduction. At the same time, it is important to maintain security of supply and facilitate value creation in the Norwegian energy industry.

Solutions to future societal challenges will encompass both new and immature energy technologies. The scope and complexity of these solutions and challenges will require large-scale investments, as well as clear priorities, in the Norwegian research and innovation system.

In its fourth national research strategy, the Energi21 board therefore recommends a substantial increase in energy technology investment and priority efforts targeting the following key areas:

• Digitalised and integrated energy systems
• Climate-friendly energy technologies for maritime transport
• Solar power for an international market
• Offshore wind power for an international market
• Hydropower as the backbone of the Norwegian energy supply
• Climate-friendly and energy-efficient industry, including Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS)

The key area “Digitalised and integrated energy systems” is an overall priority area by virtue of its crucial role in the future security of supply, integration of climate-friendly energy technologies and value creation in society. All six of the key areas hold great potential for value creation in resource utilisation and further development of a supplier industry for national and international energy markets.

The Energi21 strategy harmonises well with the EU research and innovation agenda for the energy sphere. Active participation in the European Strategic Energy Technology Plan (SET-plan) is vital for ensuring Norwegian interests and priorities and paving the way for expanded research collaboration within Europe. The Energi21 strategy document recommends continued efforts to influence EU research and innovation programmes in the aim of ensuring that initiatives on the EU research agenda address topics of common interest for the EU and Norway.

Following up the Energi21 strategy will require involvement and effort from the business sector, research and educational institutions, and the authorities.

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