New Climate Commission Report Shows Denmark How to Go 100% Renewable Energy by 2050

Denmark has long been home to a fair amount of renewable energy innovation. For much of the last forty years, the nation has been one of the leaders in the development of wind power with companies like Vestas contributing to a wind energy boom in the country. As of 2009, Denmark had a total of 3,482 megawatts of energy being generated by wind turbines that contributed 19.3% of the nation’s electricity. Now, however, the country has some plans that could up the ante and make a big splash for renewable energy.

In an announcement that mirrors a similar one made by Germany earlier this year, Denmark has a plan that, if followed, would allow the nation to become a 100% renewable energy run country by 2050. The statement came after the release of a report by the Danish Climate Commission that laid out a plan that would have the country running entirely off a network of wind farms by the target date. Citing the rising costs of oil and the lower costs of renewable energy as one of their primary reasons, Denmark could plan to totally eliminate the use of fossil fuels in their country.

To accomplish the impressive goal the plan has set for Denmark, the report indicates that a serious change in renewable energy policy would be necessary for the transition to be completed by the target date. Starting fairly soon, Denmark needs to begin allocating approximately .5% of their Gross Domestic Product to the development of the renewable energy industry to ensure it has the financial backing necessary to begin the massive changeover. The report also suggests that Denmark will need to have increased the taxes on fossil fuel based power sources by ten-fold in 2030 in order to make the point clear that they will no longer be backing fossil fuels as they come closer to the change.

Vestas, the Danish based wind turbine company, has announced that they are fully behind the new plan. Not surprisingly, of course, since Vestas stands to be one of the primary contributors to the raising of the massive wind farm system that would be powering Denmark by 2050. Ditlev Engel, the CEO of Vestas, released a statement following the report where he praised the plan for being an example to other nations around the world that a change to wind based renewable energy was a viable source of power. In his statement, Engel said of the plan: “This is a great opportunity to solidify Denmark’s reputation as a laboratory for green, CO2-free power technology solutions that are globally required.”

Currently, the plan to turn Denmark in the 100% renewable energy machine is not official Danish energy policy. However, the Climate and Energy Minister Lykke Friis has said that they will begin seriously examining the plan before the government releases their climate change proposal later next month. If Denmark accepts the plan, it would be exciting to watch both Germany and Denmark as they try to reach the goal and, hopefully, succeed. If both nations can make a strong showing perhaps others will follow.

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