The Bellona Foundation is an environmental NGO that was founded in 1986 as a direct action protest group. The Foundation has since grown and is now an advisor on climate and energy policies and has offices in Washington DC, Brussels, Oslo, St. Petersburg and Murmansk.
Bellona focuses on finance, society, politics and industry and receives funding from lots of businesses, including Veolia, Shells, SAAB and Siemens. Unlike how it seems to work in the states, The Foundation has the ability to set partnership standards for the three year long relationships with companies. Similar to the Church of Norway, Bellona is by no means restricted by the funding that it receives. This is a concept that seems completely foreign to those of us from the states.
Havard Lundberg, our presenter, told us that there are soon to be lots more conflicts between fishers and the oil industry as more offshore drilling options are explored and given the go-ahead by the government. There is a fundamental tension between these industries and the issue can be rather divisive.
Bellona is interested in furthering renewable energy technologies in Norway. The hydro plants that power the country were built in the 1950s and 1960s and people have kind of just sat back and enjoyed the nearly free electricity since that time. However, Havard stated that it’s now time that Norway move towards wind power because there is such great potential.
Bellona recently moved into a new building that has been labeled the “most energy efficient building in Norway.” The average building uses 250 kilowatts/square meter, but this building only uses 67 kw/sq. meter. The goal is to eventually build houses and other buildings that actually produce energy and pump it into the grid. The Bellona building actually overproduces in the Summer and is able to export energy to the hotel next door.
P.S. All photos from Denmark and Oslo have been posted. You can find them here