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“We could purchase aluminium from anywhere,” Bengt Haugland explains, “but we made a choice – we wanted to make the greenest aluminium cables in the world.”

The industrial electric cables from Norcable are made with aluminium from Hydro’s wire rod production facility right next door at Karmøy, which produces about 70,000 tonnes of wire rod annually. The wire rod is produced with hydropower, including from Hydro’s 20 hydroelectric power plants in Norway.

Hydro is launching an EPD (environmental product declaration) this year for low-carbon Hydro REDUXA wire rod from Karmøy, which documents the traceability of the low carbon footprint of the wire rod. This will be an option that customers can choose.

power-lines_360The small carbon footprint also benefits his customers, many of them renewable power installations like windfarms on land and sea, as well as electrical grid companies that want to demonstrate green credentials.

The vast majority of the projects are in the European Union – like Germany, France, Spain, and Belgium – where renewable energy is a growing slice of the electricity pie.

Norcable’s lines are often used to connect a wind turbine generator to the ground for further transmission and in undersea transmission between installations and to land. In addition, they supply semi-finished products for medium-voltage power cables and the familiar overhead power lines we see every day.

Aluminium is ideal for these power cable applications, offering advantages over other materials.

“We have a short distance to market and are close to aluminium produced with hydropower,” Haugland says. “That’s key for a good carbon footprint.”

Haugland works closely with Randi Hettervik Flesjå, Hydro’s Customer Representative for Wire Rod in the Primary Metal business. “We are just five minutes down the road from each other,” she says. “It’s good to see how a neighbor can start with an idea and bring it to where he is today.”