NIB has signed a 15-year loan with Norwegian power company Helgeland Kraft the six plants, which NIB says are all designed to have a beautiful appearance adapted to the surrounding environment.
”It has been important for us to show that it is possible to build hydropower plants that are both beautiful and adapts to the surrounding nature,” said Helgeland Kraft CEO Ove Brattbakk. “We are proud of our hydropower projects in Tosbotn and Øvre Forsland, and that they qualify for a loan from NIB. NIB provides us with long term funding and is a new funding source for us.”
The plants will increase the security of supply and boost the local generation capacity by 166GWh.
The NOK470 million (£38.4m) loan will help fund the construction of five new hydropower plants as part of the Tosbotn project in the municipality of Brønnøy in the Helgeland region of Nordland County. Construction is already under way, with the first plant starting operations this month and the work completed by September 2017.
The sixth hydro power plant is Øvre Forsland, which is the last of four hydropower plants built at the river Forslandselva in Leirfjord municipality in Helgeland. The plant has already been opened and generates 33 GWh annually.
“Hydropower is one of the most mature technologies among renewable energies and has among the best conversion efficiencies of all known energy sources“, says Henrik Normann, president and CEO of NIB.
Helgeland Kraft has 12 hydroelectric power plants with an annual production of 1,100GWh. The utility is owned by 14 municipalities in the region of Helgeland in Nordland, where it distributes 6,000GWh electricity to around 80,000 inhabitants through its 7,800 kilometer distribution network.