Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 80.djvu/45

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PSM V80 D045 Vide dal a typical valley with numerous waterfalls.png

Fig. 5. Vide-dal: a Typical Valley. Fifty waterfalls were counted within two miles of the spot from which the picture was taken. The valley stream flows into a lake, one end of which Is visible, and which is only 90 feet above tidewater.

or more in one or a few leaps. Her water power is thus Norway's greatest natural resource, compensating for her paucity of mineral wealth and lack of fuel. Upon this water-power is Norway's dependence for her industrial development.

In the early days on every farm might be seen little water mills for grinding grain and for mechanical purposes. At a comparatively recent date came the pulp mills and electric light and power plants. To the ordinary traveler it would seem that Scandinavia leads the world to-day in applied electricity. It is well known that Stockholm is better supplied with telephones than any other city of the world, having one instrument for every six of its inhabitants. One can send a telegram anywhere in these countries for thirteen cents. Even in the far north electric lights are generally used, and the fixtures and service leave nothing to be desired. Kiruna, a mining town north of the Arctic circle, has an electric railroad.

The larger possibilities of electric industries are now being recognized in Norway, and capital is being rapidly supplied by the wealthier countries of Europe. Unless the restrictions placed upon industry by a government strongly tinctured by socialistic ideas shall prevent, Norway will in the near future become one of the greatest, if not the greatest, industrial center of Europe. In possibilities it yields only to America. At present there are about twelve electric industries already in operation in Norway and several more are nearly ready to begin work. These include such diversified manufactures as aluminum, sodium, zinc.