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    Equinor to upgrade Hammerfest LNG facility


Project will add onshore compression and electrify liquefaction compression. [Image credit: Equinor]

by: Dale Lunan

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Equinor to upgrade Hammerfest LNG facility

Norway’s Equinor said December 20 it would invest NOK 13.2bn (US$1.3bn) to upgrade onshore compression and electrification at its Hammerfest LNG (HLNG) facility on the island of Melkoya.

The Snovhit Future plan, submitted to Norway’s minister of petroleum and energy on behalf of Snovhit’s partners, will add enough onshore compression to extend plateau production and maintain high exports beyond 2030. Electrification will reduce CO2 emissions from Hammerfest by about 850,000 metric tons/year.


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“Snohvit Future will strengthen Norway’s position as a reliable and long-term supplier of LNG to Europe,” said Geir Tungesvik, Equinor’s executive vice president for projects, drilling & procurement. “Electrification will allow us to deliver this gas with close to zero greenhouse gas emissions from production. The project will secure long-term operations and gas exports from Melkoya towards 2050.” 

Earlier this month, Equinor announced new gas production that would extend the plateau production of Hammerfest LNG.

The Snohvit Future project involves the installation of three large modules, for feed gas compression, electric steam boilers and a transformer station, at the plant, which will also be subject to extensive modifications. A tunnel and transformer station will also be added to bring electric power to Melkoya from the mainland.

Higher demand for power at HLNG will trigger the construction by Statnett (the operator of Norway’s power system) of a 420 kV power line from Skaidi to Hyggevatn. The Snohvit partners are expected to make a “considerable investment contribution” to the construction of the power line.

Electrification at Hammerfest entails replacing the existing gas turbine generators with power from shore, contributing about 13% of the Norwegian oil and gas industry’s overall 55% emissions reduction by 2030 and amounting to about 2% of Norway’s annual emissions. After the modifications, Hammerfest LNGs carbon intensity is expected to be reduced to 0.6 g CO2e/MJ from 3.8 g CO2e/MJ.

“We are converting to electric operation at Melkoya, thereby reducing annual emissions of CO2 by around 850,000 tonnes,” said Grete Haaland, Equinor’s senior vice president for exploration and production north. “This is one of the largest individual emission reduction measures for decarbonisation of oil and gas production in Norway.”

Onshore compression and conversion to electric operations on Melkoya are expected to start in 2028, Equinor said.