In Glomfjord, Statkraft cooperates with Marine Harvest on beneficial water reuse. First the water generates power, then it’s used to raise young salmon. Water reuse may prove vital for the future of hydropower.

Karl Svein Thorrud

"The Glomfjord community is totally dependent on Statkraft's ability to deliver water and electricity," says Karl Svein Thorrud, manager of Glomfjord, Svartisen and Fykanvatnet hydropower plants.

Fykanvatnet hydropower plant in Glomfjord uses the 87-metre height of fall in the Fykanåga watercourse to produce electricity for 600 households.

"What's special about this hydropower plant is that we sell the water from Lake Fykanvatnet after producing electricity from it. In this way we can charge twice for the same water," says Karl Svein Thorrud, manager of Glomfjord, Svartisen and Fykanvatnet hydropower plants in the county of Nordland in Norway.

Fykanvatnet power plant opened in 2014 inside the machine hall of Glomfjord hydropower plant. Installed capacity is 2.4 MW from one Francis turbine. Annual production is 12 GWh.

Sought-after freshwater

On the other side of Glomfjord, in Glomfjord Industrial Park, Marine Harvest operates the world's largest smolt facility.

"These plants depend on freshwater for production," explains Thorrud. "After we have produced power, the water is channelled from Fykanvatnet to a pumping station that Marine Harvest built outside the power plant. The water is pumped 4.8 kilometres to the smolt facility through two pipes with a diameter of 800 millimetres."

The cold water discharged from Fykanvatnet hydropower plant is mixed with hot water Marine Harvest gets from Glomfjord Industrial Park where it has been used as a coolant. Then the hot and cold water are regulated to the different temperatures required by the various smolt tanks.

"The temperature is determined by the smolt's stage of development. When the fry have become smolt, we also mix in seawater," says General Manager Rose-Lill Olsen in Marine Harvest's Glomfjord operation.

The agreement with Statkraft contributes to the smolt always having the optimal temperature conditions.

"In the summer we use more of the cold discharge water, and in the winter we need more hot water," Olsen says. "The pumping station at the hydropower plant has a capacity of 80 cubic metres of water per minute, and according to the agreement with Statkraft, we are guaranteed access to 60 cubic metres at all times."

Pipelines with water

Marine Harvest

> Marine Harvest is Norway's largest fish farming company with over 1,600 employees. Marine Harvest Norway is part of the Marine Harvest ASA group, which has operations in 24 countries and is listed on the Oslo and New York stock exchanges. Its global headquarters is located in Bergen.

> In Norway, the company covers the entire value chain from pre-production to breeding stock, roe, fish, processing and sales distribution. In 2014, the company produced 3.8 million meals of salmon every day. Most of the salmon from operations in Norway is exported to Europe, USA and Asia.

> The Marine Harvest Norway operation in Glomfjord is one of the biggest smolt facilities in the world, and can accommodate 12 million smolts. The Glomfjord company has 18 employees.

Sources: Marine Harvest and Glomfjord Industrial Park

Important cooperation

The pump station was completed in 2010. The idea to establish a partnership with Statkraft had been considered for a while, and when Marine Harvest lost access to its former cold water source, things started moving quickly.

"The cooperation with Statkraft is essential for our production," says Olsen.

The fish farm in Glomfjord accommodates 12 million 100-gram smolts. Last year the facility produced 8.3 million smolts.

"We receive fertilised eggs at our hatchery in the industrial park," Olsen explains.

"When they reach 5-7 grams in size, they are moved to the nursery. Here they are eventually sorted and vaccinated and remain in the tanks until they are about a year old. Then they are collected and transported by boat to the Marine Harvest fish farms along the coast, from the Trøndelag region in the south to Troms County in the north, where the fish live in net pens until they are harvested."


"It's great that the water can be reused multiple times. The alternative for the industrial park and the power plant would be to discharge the water into the sea after it was used for cooling and power generation, respectively."

The hot water the smolt facility gets from Glomfjord Industrial Park also comes from Statkraft.

"Discharge water from Neverdalsåga power plant goes to the industrial park, where it is used in, among other things, Yara's production of mineral fertilizers," explains Thorrud. "In addition, it is the drinking water supply for the entire town of Glomfjord."

"The Glomfjord community is totally dependent on Statkraft's ability to deliver water and electricity," says Thorrud.

"The power delivered by Glomfjord and Neverdalsåga hydropower plants for example, doesn't go to the main grid but rather directly to Glomfjord Industrial Park via transformers inside the industrial area."

Text: Sissel Fantoft
Photo: JimmyLinus
The article has also been published in Statkraft's magazine People & Power no. 3/2016.