Norway firm supplied Costa Concordia salvage

A Norwegian company supplied the chain used in the spectacular salvage operation of the Costa Concordia ferry in Italy this week.

Norway firm supplied Costa Concordia salvage
The Costa Concordia cruise ship. Photo: Vincenzo Pinto/AFP
Sotra Anchor & Chain, one of the world's largest marine chain suppliers, supplied the 1000 metre-long, four-tonne chain used to hold the barge which pulled the 290 metre-long cruise ship upright.  
Jan Vindenes, the company's general manager, said he has been "excited but not nervous" during the 19-hour operation. 
"It would have been a disaster of course," he said of the prospect of the chain snapping. "But it didn't happen and I was pretty confident it was strong enough." 
He refused to be drawn on how much of the record-breaking €600m cost of the salvage operation had gone on the chain.
"We made a nice profit," he said. "It's obviously not the biggest chain delivery in the world. It's not our biggest delivery this year either, but it was a nice order." 

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Norwegian city announces plan to stop naming streets after men

The city council in Bergen has proposed that streets, squares and municipal buildings no longer be named after men apart from in "very special cases". The plan has provoked opposition in some quarters.

Norwegian city announces plan to stop naming streets after men
Bergen harbour. Photo by Miguel Ángel Sanz on Unsplash

The council will take a final vote on the proposal next week.

Katrine Nødtvedt, City Councillor for Culture, Diversity and Gender Equality in Bergen, said that the drastic proposal was needed to get a message across.

“Previously you would work on the basis that you would choose a female name if you could think of anybody suitable. Instead, we should be actively working to correct the gender balance,” she told newspaper VG.

According to the city council’s website, the change in naming conventions is a part of “Project Female Name”, which will look at street names and women’s history.

The city councillor believes the proposal should get the go-ahead.

“There has long been a political majority in Bergen to promote women and name more streets and public places after women,” Nødtvedt told Dagbladet newspaper.

READ ALSO: Travel: Norway extends restrictions into May 

In 2018, the city council in Bergen decided that the municipality should increase the number of places number after women. There were 229 streets in Bergen named after people at the time, of which 28 were female names while 201 were male names.

“When you see that it is the result after 950 years of Bergen’s history, I think many understand that drastic measures are needed,” Nødtvedt said.

She also explained that the city wouldn’t be closing the door on naming places after men altogether.

“At the same time, we allow for very special cases where there are men who has a special connection to a place in the city, and then we will be able to assess it,” the councillor said.

However, the plan has provoked a strong backlash in some quarters.

“Decisions that force equality at street name level, I think is just sad and a little pathetic,” the former mayor of Bergen, Trude Drevland, told VG.

“If we are to succeed in achieving gender equality, then it won’t be measured by 50/50 names of streets and places on the back of a forced decision,” she added.