Denmark has been taking plenty of initiative in greening up their economy, and now they’re saying Europe’s financial crisis is the perfect opportunity for the region to transform into a stronger, cleaner, greener economy.
“We are facing the worst economic crisis since World War II,” Martin Lidegaard, Danish Minister for Climate, Energy and Building said in a meeting of environment ministers. “We are heading toward a 6 degree increase in temperature. Commodity prices are heading through the roof. We need to do something.”
“We think the answer is energy efficiency and also to ensure investment in green growth,” he added. “Every euro spent on energy efficiency will go to ensuring European jobs. Every euro spent on oil imports will go out of Europe.”
However, not everyone is on board with this plan. Denmark’s commitment to a fossil-free society by 2050 is in sharp contrast to Poland, which relies on coal power and holds the current EU presidency position. Poland also blocked a plan to increase the EU’s goal of cutting carbon emissions to 25% by 2020. Denmark plans to cut carbon emissions by 40% by 2020, double the current EU goal.
Environmentalists say that aside from creating jobs, focusing on greener policies could also reduce the financial burden destined to hit the region as a result of climate change.
Image CC licensed by Pål Espen Bondestad: Middelgrunden Offshore Wind Farm, Copenhagen, Denmark