The Hydro Husnes aluminium smelter in western Norway is back at full capacity for the first time in more than a decade.
With full production capacity of 195,000 t, the hydropower-based smelter “is a symbol of new, greener industrial development in Norway – a modern cornerstone that expand and renews, that plays an important role in the local community in terms of jobs, but also a producer of low-carbon aluminium that plays an important role on the road to a circular economy. A big salute to everyone who has contributed, and to the 100 new employees here – welcome to Hydro,” said CEO Hilde Merete Aasheim.
Closed in 2009, Husnes B line now operating at full production capacity
One of two production lines, the B line, was closed in 2009 as a result of the financial crisis. “It looked gloomy for a while. But the introduction of CO2 compensation in the EU and Norway made it possible to enter into new, market-based power contracts that ensured further operations and new investments. It shows how crucial the basic framework conditions are for the export industry in global competition, and it is important that they are predictable also in the future – that makes the difference between sunset industry and industrial development,” Aasheim emphasized.
In 2017, Hydro decided to invest NOK1.5bn in both a solid upgrade and the restart of the B line. Since then, work has been going on in the 1 km long production hall and now the project has been completed: 200 electrolysis cells for aluminium production have been restarted. With technology elements from Hydro’s technology pilot at Karmøy, the plant is a world-class in terms of climate, environment and performance.