June 9, 2023


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Arve Ulriksen, Counterwinds | Arve Ulriksen: Easy and errors from Rødt and Motvind

reader speech This is an entry in the discussion, written by an external contributor. The publication expresses the views of the author.

The vast majority of people understand that businesses should operate at a profit, whether they are grocery stores or energy companies. And it is precisely this surplus that provides the tax revenues that pay for our well-being.

You don’t need a business economics exam to understand this. But for deputy leader Nordlandrodt and activist in Motvind Kjetel Sorbotten, the excess is somewhat dubious. In a reader post on February 24 in Rana Bilad, he let himself be horrified by the fact that investors want the highest possible return on capital. He writes: “This says something about investors’ green transition agenda. It is not about saving the world or contributing to a reduction in carbon dioxide emissions or providing cheaper electricity to consumers.”

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Sorboutin is surprised that companies and their investors are not involved in philanthropy. But for everyone who cares about the climate and nature, it is gratifying that it is becoming more and more profitable to bet on the green transition. New technology, energy production and industry are essential for Norway and the world to reach their climate goals.

The world is in a climate crisis. If the climate were to run wild, unimaginable amounts of nature would disappear as a result of droughts, floods, wildfires, and sea level rise. The so-called UN synthesis report released in March this year is frightening reading.

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Therefore, Sorbotten took great liberties when trying to reproduce what I’m supposed to say. My comment that there would be nothing for taxes, which he referred to in his post, was in response to the opinion that it would be wrong in some way for corporations to turn a profit. There was absolutely no answer to questions about energy savings or solar energy. Do you now have to make an audio recording when speaking to Motvind or Rødt to avoid misquotes?

Of course, I’m a big fan of energy saving. At Mo Industripark, we recover energy equivalent to more than 400 GWh every year, which is equivalent to the electricity consumption of 25,000 households. We want to increase this significantly.

In the Energy Authority, where I was a member, we also presented great energy saving ambitions. Unfortunately, just saving is not enough. We have to do everything at the same time. Then we cannot without consequences withdraw from one of the technologies that are less expensive and easier to use, which is wind power. The Energy Commission spent a year investigating the connections. So I can only go on record that Sørbotten did his own calculations.

It is also interesting that Sørbotten thinks he was at the “people’s meeting about wind power in Sjonfjellet”. this is not true. The meeting was titled “An Open Discussion Session on Energy Policy”. The organizer did not mention any specific development projects in his invitation to the meeting.

In any case, I have been invited to discuss whether we have sufficient capacity today, and what is required for us to facilitate the new industry and optimism in the region. And it is needed: while Norway’s population has increased by 1.2 million since 1986, the population of Northern Norway has declined. There are now more people over 60 years old in the region. Young people move out of the country. Who will pay the taxes and look after Sorbotten and the rest of the mature Motvind if they come to need of care in old age? Nor is it easy to see Rødt’s plan for population growth in northern Norway when it can be found on absolutely all non-running trains.

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Arve Ulriksen, CEO. Mo Industrypark AS