While Rosenborg benefits from lower electricity prices in central Norway, Vålerenga is shutting down its home ground this winter. – It’s cheaper to go to a training camp, the club explains.
Even within Oslo, there are significant differences in how sports teams are affected by the energy crisis.
– We do not now have large costs for electricity, but when the floor heating needs to be ignited. We have decided that the stadium should be closed when we finish our last league game in November. And it won’t open until March 1, says Rune Riberg, chief financial officer at Vålerenga Fotball AS.
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– What is normal?
We closed our doors in January of last year. Now the women’s team will train more in Valhall, as will the men’s team. Then you go to a training camp instead. It would be cheaper than staying open.
– Is this enough?
– Yes, these are really sick prices.
– If we’re going to stay open in January, February and March, sure there are three million bills per month – nine million in total – and then we may have to wait until May to get the money from the subsidy scheme. Who will finance the broker? This is the most interesting question about the entire scheme.
– Three million a month sounds extreme?
– Yes Yes. That’s what it costs, including power connections, he says of the track, which is heated by area heating.
From Braca in Trondheim, Tori Bursith Berdal, acting general manager of Rosenborg Ballklub, reads about multi-million dollar bonds, sports facility closures, and deep desperation in southern Norway.
– Sad to read. Sadly, he says, electricity prices affect the activity of children and young people.
Without wanting to rub salt into Southern wounds, he says:
– Electricity prices were very low in Trondelag, so our costs are at a normal level, if not lower.
Norway is divided into five energy regions. The three electricity regions in southern Norway usually have higher electricity prices than in central and northern Norway. On Thursday, prices in the south were six to seven times higher than in the north.
The state’s electricity subsidy scheme for sport only applies in areas with unusually high price levels – and the Norwegian Sports Federation has sounded the alarm that the scheme is very poor.
– Even with municipal electricity subsidies, state electricity subsidies and additional subsidies from the municipality, it will be very difficult, says commercial director Einar Ustad in Nerbo-El.
In Jæren, they had to close the ice rink to save costs.
The tone is very different in Sunnmøre.
– Electricity is very cheap here. We also pay rent including electricity, so it has nothing to do with us, says Ronnie Stock, Aalesunds FK principal.
A little further south, former football chief Yngve Hallén sits on the wrong side of the power map – as manager of Sogndal Fotball AS. It costs funds to continue operations at Fosshaugane.
Sogndal has its own factory and costs are much higher than usual – despite the 300,000 electricity subsidies in April, May and June. According to Hallen, the club has a kind of “wait-and-see” approach.
Because it’s not just geography that plays a role. Whether the facility is municipal or private it can have consequences for your electricity bill.
Let’s take an example from hockey:
- Vålerenga plays in the municipality of Jordal Amfi. The elite team pays the rent and is not affected by the high electricity prices. Display is also not affected.
- Furuset is one of the few sports associations in Oslo that has its own facility, and a resource-intensive ice rink at that. The club is struggling to pay the bills.
– We are fortunate to have a good agreement with the municipality of Oslo, which pays part of our electricity expenses. Most of the rest will then be offset by the government’s electricity scheme, but that will come too late, says Furuset leader Vidar Noring.
– We don’t get the money until three to five months after the due date from the electricity provider, he points out.
The Norwegian Sports Federation states that there are 5,422 sports teams in the areas covered by the subsidy scheme. For the second quarter, there were “only” 1,454 applications from the sport.
We do not have a complete overview of how many sports teams have their own facilities. Therefore, it is also difficult to answer whether this number is as expected or not. We assume that the submission scheme is appropriate primarily for sports teams that own their own facilities, says General Secretary Nils Einar As at NIF.
The Jar Sports Club in Bærum has applied for NOK 405,000 to support the last quarter – all the way to Norway. The sports team owns Jar Isforum, a year-round facility with three ice surfaces.
– At today’s level, we’re talking about NOK 9 million in electricity per year instead of NOK 1.5 million. We get some coverage through the electricity subsidy scheme, and the municipality will contribute the difference to our own budget, says Jar leader, Helge in Bernzen.
In Hamar, Storhamar plays ice hockey at CC Amfi, which is municipally owned through Hamar Olympiske Anlegg AS.
– We are not affected yet in terms of rent, says head of management Dag Kjelsrud.
Hamar Olympiske Anlegg is responsible for the operation of the Hamar Olympic Hall, the Viking Ship and the Hamar Olympic Coliseum – Nordschallen/Storhammar Ice Hall.
We will cover 95 percent of electricity prices above the 2019 level. We have predictability. For our part, operations will continue as usual as long as we have an agreement with the municipality of Hamar, according to Tom Eric Hovede.And the Managing Director of Hamar Olympiske Anlegg AS.
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