The development of the electric grid started in the years before the First World War in Sogn og Fjordane, as in the rest of rural Norway. Nevertheless, in the late1930s, Sogn og Fjordane was by far the county in Southern Norway with the lowest degree of electrification. This article examines the slow-paced electrification of Sogn og Fjordane before 1940, focusing specifically on the role of the county government. Earlier works have emphasized topographical and demographic factors combined with weak private and public finances to explain the late and fragmented development of the electric grid in Sogn og Fjordane. While these factors were undoubtedly significant, the analysis here also considers some political and organisational factors. Sogn og Fjordane County had for 50 years been more involved in the transport sector than any other county government. County-owned companies or inter-municipal companies, including the county as a shareholder, were well known in Sogn og Fjordane and were also introduced in the electric grid in a set-up that combined inter-municipal and county ownership. Major problems caused by the Ålfot scandal are emphasised to explain the county government's withdrawal from the electricity sector in the interwar period. It is also argued that the existing organisational model likely was less conducive to securing financial support from the government during the interwar crisis.
The article examines different possible paths for the regional and municipality-owned power company BKK following the Norwegian energy liberalisation in 1990, as these paths were promoted by different stakeholders. The state power company Statkraft wanted BKK as a dependent subsidiary, the local political majority wanted it as a source of shareholder value and the company’s employees wanted it as a local provider of jobs. After a period of tug of war, BKK’s regional embeddedness was preserved.
Since 2000, extensive expansion of small hydropower has taken place in Norway. Landowners and power companies have played key roles. This study from the County of Sogn and Fjordane and the national level indicates that differences in the publicly owned companies' strategies can explain the widely different ways small power plants got organized and owned. Regional power companies empowered farmers to establish independent and self-owned power plants, while power companies operating on a national level signed long-term lease contracts of waterfalls with landowners and took control of the plants. These contracts and power plants were later sold to foreign companies.
A characteristic feature of the pre-industrial societies was that they relied on limited energy resources. It was only by using fossil fuels and new technologies that these societies could move the boundaries that the organic economy had set for production and consumption.
Norwegian energy history is, from the 1900th Century on, about the movement of those boundaries and is composed of two stories. One deals with the mainland economy, the other deals with the foreign economy (the merchant marine, etc.). These two stories are closely connected but are nonetheless dissimilar.
In this article, we present a sketch of the first story about energy consumption in the mainland economy, in the form of an energy accounting for the Norwegian mainland 1835–2012. The accounts show the accumulated consumption of energy from nine selected energy carriers in Norway. Our work is the first overall accounting 1835–2012, and gives new insights into the field of energy consumption research. Specifically, we provide a new accounting of Norwegian energy consumption in the years 1835–1900 and 1950–1976.
In the result section we first present figures for energy consumption 1835–2012. Secondly, we briefly outline an energy history for the foreign sector. We round out the result section with a brief reflection on whether the Norwegian energy history is so deviant from other countries that we can talk about a separate Norwegian development.
Samvirke is a Norwegian word for a concept based upon a type of organisation with traditions going back hundreds of years, as well as a principle for cooperation and collaboration. Still it is something more than and different from collaboration. Samvirke carries values as confidence and common understanding. By tradition, samvirke is based upon voluntary and open membership and democratic governance.
Samvirke has been a founding principle for the Norwegian rescue service since it was formally organised during the 1960s. In the preparatory documents it was clearly expressed that the basis for all rescue services in Norway was the deeply rooted willingness to help when accidents occur. The rescue services concern the whole society, and the state uses its own resources as well as making it possible for voluntary organisations and private enterprises to contribute with their capacity and competence. After the terror attacks in Oslo and at Utøya on July 22nd, 2011 the principle of samvirke was promoted as one of the nationwide principles to ensure a better organising of work related to societal safety and emergency preparedness. It requires an overarching approach that should not be restricted to formalised structures, but also has to include knowledge about local conditions and voluntary efforts.
The principle of samvirke therefore should not be regarded as an executive governance principle from above. From a historical as well as a contemporary viewpoint it seems to be well founded in Norwegian emergency preparedness and contingency practice as both a form of organising the resources and a way of working on the local level when incidents must be handled.
Heimen er det sentrale vitenskapelige tidsskriftet for lokal og regional historie. Tidsskriftet har vært organ for Landslaget for lokalhistorie siden stiftelsen i 1922.
Heimen har som mål å publisere studier over lokale samfunn eller fenomener som kan kaste lys over større enheter eller spørsmål. Redaksjonen har som ambisjon å løfte fram nye temaer som er i forskningsfronten innenfor feltet og legger vekt på det nyskapende både med hensyn til teorier og metode. Gjennom artikler, debattinnlegg og bokmeldinger avspeiler tidsskriftet hele landet, men redaksjonen holder også åpent for relevante internasjonale bidrag. Lokal- og kulturhistorisk interesserte med ulik bakgrunn og fra ulike fag er velkommen som bidragsytere.
Finn-Einar Eliassen, Tønsberg
Lars Gaute Jøssang, Bergen
Knut Sprauten, Oslo
Liv Helene Willumsen, Tromsø
Line Grønstad, Oslo
Steinar Aas, Bodø
Sats: Laboremus Sandefjord AS
ISSN Online: 1894-3195
Heimen utgis av Landslaget for lokalhistorie i samarbeid med Universitetsforlaget. Tidsskriftet mottar støtte fra Nasjonalt tidsskriftkonsortium for humaniora og samfunnsvitenskap.
Forsidebilde: Illustrasjonsfoto, Statnett: Bildet viser byggingen av kraftledningen 420KV Klæbu – Viklandet. Mast på Svinvikhammaren, Todalsfjorden i bakgrunnen. Bildet er trolig fra 2002. Copyright © Statnett.
© Universitetsforlaget 2018