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Grand opening of Centre for Sustainable Subsurface Resources

Ribbon cutting ceremony: The minister, Terje Aasland cuts the red ribbon with Sarah Gasda Centre Director for CSSR and Research Director for NORCE Energy to his far right.
Ribbon cutting ceremony: The minister, Terje Aasland cuts the red ribbon with Sarah Gasda Centre Director for CSSR and Research Director for NORCE Energy to his far right.

– This is a favorite day at work! When we now open this centre, it is an important step in the energy transition, said Norwegian Minister of Petroleum and Energy Terje Aasland when he opened the Centre for Sustainable Subsurface Resources (CSSR) in Bergen this week.

Norway’s petroleum resources must be developed more efficiently and with renewable energy as an input factor stated the minister.

The Centre for Sustainable Subsurface Resources (CSSR) will acquire new knowledge and develop better digital methods for energy-efficient reservoir management for oil and gas, hydrogen and CO2 storage.

– Exciting future perspectives and possibilities according to Aasland, who added; – CSSR “fits like a glove” with the policy that we want to pursue in the area of energy and research.

CSSR responds to the OG21 strategy

CSSR responds very well to the current OG21 strategy, according to Arne Jacobsen from the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate, who also emphasized the positive effects the centre will have on the increasing the understanding of the subsurface, enabling more precise drilling and exploration of wells, optimizing drainage of the reservoirs and minimizing energy consumption in the production phase.

– In addition, we see that the centre work is central when we now facilitate CO2 storage on the Norwegian continental shelf, said Jacobsen.

Provides needed predictability and long-termism

– It is fantastic that we were awarded a centre by the Research Council of Norway as it provides predictability and long-termism in our research efforts going forward, which is extremely important for research institutes and for general research and competence development in Norway, said Kristin Wallevik, CEO of NORCE.

The centre researchers will use their many years of experience from petroleum research towards the energy transition and ignite new, future oriented solutions in close collaboration with the industry.

Electrification of the Norwegian continental shelf as part of the energy transition is more important than ever, according to Wallevik, and several centres working on different aspects will support each other in the further development of knowledge.
CSSR will provide knowledge about the subsurface at the intersection between petroleum, wind, hydrogen and CCUS.

– The petroleum centres ambitions and focus areas fit well with what the industry needs for many decades to come. Cooperation and long-term work are important for success, said Camilla Vavik Pedersen in Equinor.

The role of the subsurface in the energy transition

Over the next eight years, researchers in the NORCE-led Centre will develop new knowledge on how the subsurface can be used in the energy transition.

– Through this research centre we are investigating how we can extract oil and gas from the reservoirs smarter and more efficiently and how digitalization can help operators make science-based decisions, explains Sarah Gasda, Centre Director for CSSR and Research Director for NORCE Energy.

– This research is crucial for operators as they transition to renewable energy sources for upstream operations, she explains. Operators cannot achieve their ambitions of eliminating emissions on the Norwegian by 2050 without help from subsurface research, she adds. Read our interview with Sarah Gasda.

GCE Ocean Technology is one of the industry partners in the project.

Contact Information

Bjarte Fagerås

Senior R&D Advisor

Bjarte Fagerås

Jon O. Hellevang

R&D Manager

Jon O. Hellevang


  • Name: Centre for Sustainable Subsurface Resources (CSSR)
  • Description:”long-term targeted research initiative at a high international level.
  • Lifetime: 5+3 years
  • Project leader: NORCE
  • Research partner/education: University of Bergen
  • Industry partners: 3 operators, 3 technology companies,1 Industry cluster
  • International partners: 6 partners from EU and USA
  • Educational goal: >13 PhD/postdocs
  • Total budget: 170 mNOK (36% industry, 17% FoU)
  • Project start: 2022
  • Research themes: Reservoir modelling, multiphysics, optimization, hydrogen, CCS / CCUS: Carbon Capture, Utilization, and Storage