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The Crown Prince of Norway visits Seattle to discuss sustainability

During his visit, Norwegian Crown Prince Haakon will meet with local business leaders and representatives from the University of Washington to discuss decarbonization and green transition.

Here Crown Prince Haakon Magnus of Norway and Mette-Marit of Norway are shown dressed up as they head to the wedding between Princess Madeleine and Christopher O'Neill on June 8, 2013.

Norwegian Crown Prince Haakon and Mette-Marit of Norway head to the wedding between Princess Madeleine and Christopher O’Neill on June 8, 2013.

Practice those bows and curtsies — Seattle is in the presence of royalty this week as the Norwegian Crown Prince Haakon visits the Emerald City to discuss sustainability issues.

His majesty arrived Wednesday, April 16 with plans to depart the next day after meeting with several local business leaders, state officials, and representatives from University of Washington at the National Nordic Museum to discuss technology and transitioning to greener energy methods.

In tow from Norway are several other public officials including its Minister of Trade and Industry Jan Christian Vestre and Secretary of Fisheries and Ocean Policy Kristina Sigurdsdottir Hansen — several of these officials will also tour businesses such as Amazon and Microsoft.

The crown prince’s visit, however, doesn’t come with much surprise.

Seattle’s relationship with Norway

Seattle has long been the home to thousands of Norwegian Americans + home of the largest Syttende Mai (Norwegian Constitution Day) celebration outside of Norway. Seattle also has a sister city partnership with Bergen, Norway that was founded in 1967.

In 2015, Seattle got some love from King Harald V during his visit when he made a comment about understanding why so many Nordics chose the Emerald City as its home — “... with the backdrop of hills and mountains and the closeness to the ocean, it looks very much like parts of Norway.”

But we’ve been doing business with the city for awhile, too. In 2019, Washington and Norway signed a memorandum of understanding to help boost trade between the two, create sustainable technology, and enhance the maritime economy.

Looking to sport your own red and blue Scandinavian cross? Seattle’s Syttende Mai celebration is just over a month away on Friday, May 17. Expect parades, live music, a luncheon, and lots of beer + aquavit.