Norway’s gas era can celebrate its 40th anniversary today. The opening of the Norpipe pipeline on 8 September 1977 marked the start of Norwegian gas deliveries to European consumers.

The event was celebrated in appropriate fashion by operator Gassco’s energy seminar at Emden in Germany yesterday evening, which included a look back at historical highlights. Other topics covered in the programme were the outlook for the Norwegian continental shelf, the green shift and security of supply.

Those present included representatives from the Norwegian and German governments, industry and academia.

“Norway has played an important role over 40 years in securing energy for Europe, and Norwegian gas will remain a key component in the European energy mix,” says Gassco CEO Frode Leversund.

“It all started with gas from the Ekofisk field, but supplies have increased substantially in line with new discoveries and Europe’s growing demand for reliable energy.

“Progress has been rapid since 1977, from Norpipe’s 440 kilometres to today’s flexible and efficient pipeline system of no less than 8 829 kilometres. Norway now meets some 25 per cent of EU gas demand.”