Denmark run on 100% renewable energy is feasible by 2050
- 28 May 2014
LONDON: It is technically feasible as well as cost-effective for Denmark to develop its energy system based on 100% renewables by 2050, fresh analysis from the Danish Energy Agency confirms.
The report Energiscenarier for 2020, 2035 og 2050 (Energy Scenarios for 2020, 2035 and 2050), compares future scenarios for Denmark’s energy system – which includes transport – if different forms of renewable energy including wind power and biogas are consumed instead of fossil fuels.
In the wind scenario, capacity would need to expand to the equivalent of around one 400 megawatt wind farm a year from 2020 to 2050. Older turbines would also need to be replaced during this time. But despite this, the report explains production costs are "relatively low" for wind power per kWh (see below table).
Analyzing the cost and feasibility of each, the report concludes the low carbon technology needed to meet Denmark’s vision of a 100% renewably-powered nation by 2050 already exists, although some must become cheaper and more efficient to run in order to be effectively scaled-up.
The agency also points out that to reach the government’s 2050 target on time, a decision must be made on whether the country opts for an electricity-based wind power system or a fuel-based biomass system as outlined in the report, very soon after 2020.
Denmark has already made great strides toward its goal of 100% renewable energy consumption by 2050 as well as enacted bold climate policy; in February it committed to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 40% below 1990 levels by 2020.
The European Union itself is also making considerable progress towards the 2020 European target of 20% renewable energy use. Eurostat data shows that in 2012, renewables provided 14.1% of Europe's energy consumption, compared with just 8.3% in 2004, with Denmark recording one of the greatest increases.
Above table from the Danish Energy Agency
Read the report Energiscenarier for 2020, 2035 og 2050 (in English)
- Renewables now provide 14% of Europe’s energy
- Denmark pledges 40% carbon reduction by 2020, creates Climate Council
- 80% of Europeans agree tackling climate change boosts economic growth
Image by Lamoix/Flickr
By Clare Saxon