Nor-Shipping focuses on the environment

Blue & Green


Photo: Nor-Shipping
Nor-Shipping closing ceremony fireworks light up the masts of ships in Oslo harbor.

M. Michael Brady
Asker, Norway

Nor-Shipping is a trade fair held over a workweek in the Oslo region in May-June of odd-numbered years. As the name implies, it is a key meeting place for the global maritime sector and, from 2019 on, also for ocean industries. Members of Norway’s royal family and cabinet ministers attend the opening, and its professional and social events are news of the city.

In 2015, Nor-Shipping celebrated its 50th anniversary, and in 2017, it highlighted the ongoing changes in the maritime sector. This year’s Nor-Shipping, held June 3-7, set records to become the most successful ever (See “Facts and Figures”). It accentuated two current color-coded changes, blue and green:

• Blue technology is the transfer of technologies to sea basin economies, as defined by the European Cluster Collaboration Platform (

• Green shift refers to climate and environmentally friendly restructuring, as set forth in 2014 in a Norwegian governmental white paper (Further information and reading).

The impacts of these changes were pondered on June 6, in two intense 90-minute brainstorming sessions called think tanks. The first, chaired by Michael Jones of the Maritime Alliance of San Diego ( focused on potential pathways for stronger networks to meet the demands of industry and society. The second, chaired by Diana Gilpin of Smart Green Shipping Alliance of Devizes, Wiltshire, United Kingdom (, addressed the challenge of decarbonizing the shipping and offshore sector.

Throughout, blue and green were topics of discussion at Nor-Shipping 2019. The biggest physical manifestation was the Gagarin Prospect, the first-ever Aframax tanker to run on liquefied natural gas (LNG), chosen as the winner of the Nor-Shipping 2019 Next Generation Ship Award. Delivered by Hyundai Samho Heavy Industries in 2018, it is the first of 10 such vessels ordered by the Russian Sovcomflot Safety Comes First initiative (, in a partnership with Shell Oil.

The most unconventional vision was that of a zero-emission cruise ship to be driven by a combination of wind and solar energy, designed to meet the European Commission’s long-term strategy for a climate-neutral Europe by the year 2050. A significant trigger of that strategy is the Norwegian government’s requirement that by 2026, the world’s heritage fjords shall be totally free of emissions from tourist ships. NCE Maritime Clean Tech (, one of 14 Norwegian Centers of Expertise, is enabling that vision.

Nor-Shipping 2019 Facts and Figures:

• 22,500 square meters (241,425 square feet) exhibition space

• 900 exhibitors from 47 countries

• 30,200 visitors from 85 nations

• nearly 50,000 delegates attended event week activities

Further information and reading:

• Nor-Shipping website, continuously updated, in English only:

Green shift—climate and environmentally friendly restructuring, Norwegian governmental white paper, Oct. 12, 2014:

• “Nor-Shipping 2017: Expo highlights maritime sector changes,” The Norwegian American, July 11, 2017:

• “Nor-Shipping 2015 a success,” The Norwegian American, June 16, 2015:

This article originally appeared in the July 12, 2019, issue of The Norwegian American.

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M. Michael Brady

M. Michael Brady was born, raised, and educated as a scientist in the United States. After relocating to the Oslo area, he turned to writing and translating. In Norway, he is now classified as a bilingual dual national.