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Norwegian police are investigating reports of a drone flying over the gas processing plant Kårstø in southwestern Norway, Norwegian newspaper Stavanger Aftenblad reported on Friday.
The drone was too large for hobby use, an expert on drones told the newspaper.
Norway has beefed up security at its energy infrastructure facilities since the end of September after spotting other drones flying over oil and gas assets and after the explosions on the lines of the Nord Stream pipeline in the Baltic Sea.
On September 26, the Petroleum Safety Authority Norway (PSA) of Norway urged increased vigilance by all operators and vessel owners on the Norwegian Continental Shelf, after companies operating offshore Norway had recently given warnings or notifications of a number of observations concerning unidentified drones or aircraft close to offshore installations.
As of October 3, Norway has posted soldiers from its Home Guard to protect energy infrastructure as Western Europe's largest oil and gas producer and its Scandinavian neighbors increased security following the suspected sabotage of the Nord Stream pipelines in the Baltic Sea at the end of September.
Securing and guarding critical civil and military infrastructure is one of the Home Guard's core tasks, the Norwegian Army says.
Four leaks, two in each of the Nord Stream 1 and 2 pipelines, were discovered at the end of September after gas started leaking from the infrastructure just outside Swedish and Danish territorial waters in the Baltic Sea.
Nord Stream 2 was never put into operation after Germany axed the certification process following the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Russia, for its part, shut down Nord Stream 1 indefinitely in early September, claiming an inability to repair gas turbines because of the Western sanctions.
The EU believes the gas leaks from the pipelines in the Baltic Sea were the result of a deliberate act of sabotage and not an accident or a mere technical failure.
By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com
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Tsvetana is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and SeeNews.