Norway - Energy and power
Norway, always well supplied with waterpower, has become self-sufficient in energy through the exploitation of vast petroleum and natural gas deposits in the North Sea. The major fields include Ekofisk, Frigg, Sleipner, Statfjord, Troll, and Oseberg. The Frigg field, first tapped in 1972, is one of the world's largest offshore natural gas deposits. As of 2002, Norway was the world's third-largest exporter of oil. Its oil sector had gone through a period of transition that included the privatization of the state-owned oil companies Statoil and Norsk Hydro in 2001. Most of the State Direct Financial Interest (SDFI), which managed holdings in 150 offshore oil and gas fields and controlled around 40% of the country's oil production, had been reorganized to form a new entity called Petoro. Norway's proven oil reserves were 9.44 billion barrels at the beginning of 2002. Natural gas reserves totaled 1.2 trillion cu m (42 trillion cu ft). Oil production in 2001 was 3.4 million barrels per day; production of natural gas was 51.2 billion cu m (1.8 trillion cu ft).
Electric power production in 2000 totaled 140.9 billion kWh, which was almost entirely hydroelectric. Installed capacity was 27,937 million kW. Norway is one of the world's largest per capita consumers of electricty. Consumption in 2000 was 112.5 billion kWh. Retail distribution is by municipal organizations; virtually the entire population is now served. With the exhaustion of hydroelectric resources and an abundance of natural gas, a greater proportion of the nation's power was expected to come from gas-fired plants in the future. As of 2002 three new gas-fired plants were slated for construction, including a combined heat and power plant in Skogn.
Until 1960 Norway imported almost all of its refined petroleum products. The importance of coal and other solid fuels has steadily declined in recent years both in terms of total consumption and in relation to other forms of energy, while hydroelectric power and petroleum products have rapidly increased in importance.