On Tuesday this week, production resumed at the Hydro Husnes B line – more than 10 years after the production line was idled as a result of the financial crisis. Now, Hydro's aluminium plant in western Norway is well on its way back to full production, after running at half capacity since 2009.
As of today, Hydro Husnes produces about 95,000 tonnes of aluminium annually via the A line. This will gradually increase to around 195,000 as the 200 electrolysis cells in the one-kilometer-long B line are restarted.
“It is great that the B line at Hydro Husnes is finally producing aluminium again. The restart fits well with Hydro's strategy of lifting profitability and driving sustainability. The world will have access to more renewable energy-based and infinitely recyclable aluminium, and with the technology upgrades that have been implemented, we can produce and deliver in a more efficient, profitable and sustainable manner,” says Hydro President & CEO Hilde Merete Aasheim.
Aasheim explains that the restart of the B line is based on a combination of increased demand for aluminium and expectations that Norway will continue to utilise EU’s emissions trading system (ETS) for 2021-2030.
“We welcome framework conditions that pave the way for continued production of low-carbon aluminium in Norway to serve a world market that is increasingly demanding more of our products. Aluminium is on the EU's list of raw materials that will contribute to the European Green Deal with the goal of making Europe climate neutral by 2050. Our Norwegian aluminium production is based on hydro- and wind power and has among the world's lowest carbon footprint – making what we produce an important part of Europe’s 2050 goal,” she says.
Close to 100 new jobs
Executive Vice President of Hydro's Primary Metal business area, Eivind Kallevik, is happy that the restart has begun – and that it has positive ripple effects in the local community.
“This is a milestone. The restart of the B line at Hydro Husnes is not only of great importance to Hydro, but also to the local community surrounding our plant. We have invested NOK 1.5 billion in upgrades and the production line holds world-class standards in climate, environmental and operational performance. In addition to doubling the production of aluminium based on renewable energy, the restart of the B line contributes to almost a hundred new jobs," says Kallevik.
Photo caption: The dedicated restart team working on resuming production at the Hydro Husnes B line. On November 24, the first five electrolysis cells were restarted. (Photo: Geir Berntzen/Hydro)