Fishermen against wind farms

Fear large-scale development will damage their livelihoods

wind farms

Photo: Halvard Alvik / NTB
A small fishing boat in Ålesund.

FRAZER NORWELL

The Local

The Norwegian Fishermen’s Association fears that the large-scale development of offshore wind farms will cause damage to their livelihoods.

Large-scale expansion of the wind farms could cause irreversible damage to coastal fishing, the association has said.

“There is a risk of destroying one of Norway’s most important industries in order to build up something (wind energy) that we don’t know the impact of,” the leader of the Norwegian Fishermen’s Association, Kjell Ingebrigtsen, told newspaper Klassekampen.

There are about 11,000 fishermen in Norway according to official data, hauling in around 2.5 million tons of fish each year. Around 40,000 jobs depend on the country’s fishing industry.

Offshore wind is one of the fastest growing forms of energy globally, meanwhile. The EU plans to expand its wind capacity to 25 times its current size by 2030.

Most political parties in Norway also see large-scale development of offshore wind as an important part of the shift toward green renewable energy.

Ingebrigtsen says he believes this rapid development of wind power could cause permanent damage to the fishing industry.

“It is important to have good climate solutions. But you cannot just push the challenges out to sea. It will have major consequences,” he told Klassekampen.

Although Norway’s sea area is six-and-a-half times larger than its land mass, Ingebrigtsen says offshore wind farms and fishermen are both vying for the same space.

“Norwegian sea areas are large, but both 

This article originally appeared in the April 23, 2021, issue of The Norwegian American. To subscribe, visit SUBSCRIBE or call us at (206) 784-4617.

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The Norwegian American

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