The Danish government’s efforts towards meeting the country’s ambitious target of reducing emissions by 70% by 2030 have been judged “insufficient” by the body tasked with monitoring its progress, with measures so far announced only likely to take it a third of the way. In its first annual status report, the Danish Council on Climate Change said new laws, inter-party agreements and initiatives announced since the country’s climate law came into effect last June would reduce emissions by the equivalent of 7.2m tonnes of CO2 by 2030, which is only enough to reduce Denmark’s emissions by 54% compared with 1990 levels. “This is an important first step, but from this, it cannot be deduced that we have now met a third of the challenge,” the report warns, noting that as the country has started with “low-hanging fruit”, all remaining reductions would be more difficult to achieve. “There is still a long way to go towards the goal, and this underlines the great challenge that Danish society has set itself.” The report stated.
Rasmus Helveg Petersen, the climate spokesperson for the Social Liberal party, told the Politiken newspaper that the report was a “massive fail with a capital F” for the government’s climate efforts and “a wake-up call” for every party in government to step up efforts.
But Denmark’s climate minister, Dan Jørgensen, welcomed the “good advice and recommendations” and believed the government had been “busy”. Despite the coronavirus pandemic dominating the government agenda, the parliament in June still voted through a climate law making the target legally binding on all future governments, with the government at the same time launching a plan to establish two “energy islands”, one artificial and one on Bornholm, which will together supply 5GW of wind power. These efforts, however, have proven to not be enough to satisfy the Council, and only time will tell if other efforts by the Danish Government will be enough.
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Denmark’s climate policies ‘insufficient’ to meet 2030 emissions target, The Guardian, 2021-02-28