The ocean space base: Here is tomorrow’s maritime industrial park

NorSea and Polarbase have big plans for the future use of our bases along the coast. Key words are salmon farming, processing and distribution of seaweed and a “one-stop-shop” for aquaculture and maritime industry. At the same time, we will serve the oil and gas industry as we do today. Welcome to the industrial park of the future.

– Aquaculture is a very important industry and will only become even more important, both for Norway in general, Northern Norway and for us at NorSea. Hammerfest is the second largest fish farming municipality in northern Norway, and thus one of the largest in the country. Our goal is to have 40-50 percent of our turnover from industries other than oil and gas by 2030. To reach that, the the ocean space represents an important potential, says Ketil Holmgren, CEO of Polarbase in Hammerfest and head of NorSea’s operations in northern Norway. .

Ketil Holmgren, CEO at Polarbase and VP Operations North in NorSea

55 years of change

NorSea has a 55-year history of innovation and change. We established a base in Stavanger before Phillips found oil at Ekofisk. Since then, we have developed in step with the changes in the oil and gas industry.

Now it’s about taking the next step; using our people, expertise, facilities and the rest of our infrastructure to pursue a range of emerging, sustainable business areas.

Among them is aquaculture. At several of NorSea’s bases – and starting in Hammerfest.

– We have the areas, the location, the infrastructure, the people and the expertise. In addition, we know that many of the same companies that supply the oil and gas industry today can and will also supply aquaculture and other parts of the maritime sector. Many of them are already established in our industrial parks, explains Holmgren, who has worked on three specific projects in the aquaculture sphere – together with skilled colleagues in NorSea.

Three concepts in the making

At Polarbase – which in the NorSea group are the ones furthest ahead with the plans – they are working on the realization of three concepts:

Polar Aqua. Plant for land-based farming – a so-called post-smolt plant – with a capacity of up to 14,000 tonnes a year. Post-smolt are salmon fry that with modern technology can grow up to 1 kg in land.

Polar Algae. The company will harvest, dry and further process seaweed. The first harvesting boat will be delivered in the spring of 2022.

Aquabase. Service center for the aquaculture industry. In short, the goal is to make our base so attractive that you will find “all” the supplier companies you need to engage in aquaculture – whereas NorSea can deliver operational and technical services to the industry.

The goal is for these concepts to form the basis for similar establishments for the aquaculture industry at several of our bases in the years to come.

So are these only bloated plans on a PowerPoint? Not at all, answers Ketil Holmgren, who has high expectations for the realization of the projects in the years to come.

“We expect that we will already in 2023 harvest and refine seaweed in the Polar Algae. And we are also working to ensure that we start building the land-based post-smolt plant the same year”, finishes our CEO at Polarbase.

See and hear more about the plans in Hammerfest on NorSeaTV: