Enova subsidy provides foundation for developing Elkem Salten

"We are very pleased with the Enova subsidy of NOK 350 million for the energy recovery facility at Elkem Salten. The subsidy will provide a firm basis for developing technology which has a significant potential to mitigate climate change in Norway and internationally," says Helge Aasen, CEO of Elkem.

Enova, a Norwegian government enterprise responsible for promotion of environmentally friendly production and consumption of energy, announced yesterday that Elkem Salten is receiving a commitment for an investment subsidy of NOK 350 million. The investment subsidy has been given to a project involving the construction of an energy recovery facility which will be able to recover as much as 300 GWh of electricity annually.

"Energy recovery is Elkem's and the smelter industry's foremost contribution to curtailing global climate gas emissions. The investment subsidy from Enova is absolutely crucial for commissioning these types of projects. We are very pleased with the grant from Enova, which will provide the foundation for realising the project," says Helge Aasen, CEO of Elkem, and adds:

"The plant will facilitate long-term and resource-effective operations at Elkem Salten. It will be the world's largest ever energy recovery facility at a silicon plant and will also contribute to strengthening Elkem's aim of being one of the world's most environmentally friendly and energy-effective energy processing companies," says Aasen.

In total the project is expected to cost over NOK 1 billion and the goal is to commence operations in 3 or 4 years' time. Construction and operation of the energy recovery facility will have a significant effect on local employment.

Over the course of 30 years, Elkem has developed expertise in operating recovery facilities with dust capture systems from plants such as Thamshavn and Bjølvefossen. A recovery facility for delivering steam to nearby industry is being completed in Canada and will become operational in December this year.

The technology has significant international potential as a climate change mitigation measure, according to Aasen, who says that preliminary studies are being carried out on similar facilities at all of Elkem's plants.

“The construction of energy recovery facilities has to be tailored to each smelter, but the investment grant creates a foundation for further implementing energy recovery facilities at our other plants. “

For further information: 

Helge Aasen, CEO of Elkem, tel. +47 99247635

Arve Ulriksen, Plant Manager at Elkem Salten, tel. +47 95030319


About Elkem Salten

  • Smelter located in Sørfold county in Nordland
  • 180 employees
  • Revenues of NOK 1.2 billion in 2011
  • Annual production capacity of 70,000 metric tonnes of silicon, 27,000 tonnes of microsilica and 8,000 metric tonnes of Sidistar
  • Annual electricity consumption of 1,000 GWh fully operational

About the energy recovery project

  • Expect an annual recovery of 300 GWh of electricity to the national grid
  • Full potential is 335 GWh per year – equivalent to the annual energy needs of 13,400 private homes
  • Total project cost of over NOK 1 billion
  • Goal for implementation within 3 to 4 years
  • Provides a reduction in emissions equivalent to 210,000 tonnes of CO2 per year


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