Denmark’s goal is to be entirely free of fossil fuels by 2050 and to reduce greenhouse gas emissions with 40% by the year 2020, compared to1990 levels. A major step towards reaching that last goal was accomplished in March 2012, with the political agreement on energy policy. The remaining reductions of approximately four million tons of CO2 or six percentage points will come primarily from the transportation, agriculture and construction sectors, and from waste management.
A responsible and economically sound climate policy
Part of the plan is also to demonstrate that reducing emissions and securing economic growth and welfare can go hand in hand:
“The government wants to show that an ambitious climate policy can be combined with economic development and good framework conditions for the business community. Only this way, can our example inspire others. That is also the reason for the government’s decision not to impose new, general increases on taxes and levies in the business community.”
It reads in the climate plan (in Danish).
As part of its work on the climate policy plan, an inter-ministerial working group has developed the above mentioned catalogue of 78 possible climate policy initiatives to address climate change. These policy proposals, along with the proposed legislation, will be the government’s main instruments in the coming years in order to continuously monitor and adjust its climate policy.
- “Some of these initiatives will have socio-economic benefits, while others will be very expensive for society,” says Martin Lidegaard. “Each time the government has to decide on agricultural, transport or environmental policies the climate change effects will be taken into consideration. This will ensure a responsible and economically sound climate policy.”
For instance, the government calculated that increasing the insulation requirements for windows could lead to a net savings for the economy of 57 million Danish kroner (around 7.5 million Euro) – a figure which takes into account both the cost of implementing the initiative and the money saved through the reduction in emissions.
Not least the context of the on-going negotiations in the European Union will impact upon which and how many of the 78 initiatives the government will choose to implement, as there is still uncertainty about how far Denmark is from reaching the 40 per cent target and how much EU initiatives will contribute. The scale of national Danish initiatives will be adjusted accordingly.
Read more at the Ministry for Climate, Energy and Building's website.