OSLO, April 23 (Reuters) - Equinor EQNR.OL and its partners have decided to invest 7.9 billion Norwegian crowns ($947 million) to connect more offshore platforms at the Troll field to Norway's onshore grid to reduce carbon dioxide emissions, the company said on Friday.
The project aims to partly replace electricity generated by gas power turbines at the Troll B platform, and fully at the Troll C platform, helping to cut almost half a million tonnes of CO2 emissions, or an equivalent of 1% of Norway's total emissions, it added.
Gas power turbines on offshore platforms account for more than 80% of total greenhouse gas emissions from the Norwegian oil and gas industry.
Connecting platforms to the onshore grid, where electricity is mainly generated by renewable energy sources, such as hydropower, is seen as the main measure to reduce the industry's emissions.
"Electrification is essential to successful reduction of the emissions from the Norwegian continental shelf, and we have ambitious plans for this," Kjetil Hove, head of Equinor's offshore operations in Norway, said.
Equinor's partners in the Troll field are ConocoPhillips COP.N, Total TOTF.PA, Shell RDSa.L and Petoro.
Several offshore installations off Norway, including Troll A gas platform, and platforms at Johan Sverdrup oilfield, the largest in Western Europe, already get power from shore.
The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate predicts that by 2023 about 45% of Norway's oil and gas could be produced using electricity from shore, including previously approved projects.
The decision to electrify Troll B and Troll C platforms could increase that share, when they start getting power from land in 2024 and 2026, respectively.
($1 = 8.3410 Norwegian crowns)
(Reporting by Nerijus Adomaitis; Editing by Steve Orlofsky)
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