Denmark's policy must look to 2050 says new report

DENMARK: A report on the shape Denmark's energy policy should take in the next decade must look all the way to 2050, with wind subsidies removed from 2030, the country's energy commission has said.

Wind and solar are expected to compete on market terms from 2030 (pic CGP Grey)
Wind and solar are expected to compete on market terms from 2030 (pic CGP Grey)

Denmark is targeting a fossil-fuel-free energy system by 2050. The commission, set up last year to look at policy strategy for 2020-2030, believes a long-term approach is vital.

The commission's report said wind and solar energy would play a "major role" in achieving the target but could compete "on market terms" by 2030. 

The report called for a "paradigm shift" in Denmark's energy strategy. The commission was chaired by outgoing Danfoss CEO Niels Christiansen.

"After the last year's work by the Energy Commission, it is clear that there is a need for an ambitious energy target already from 2020, if we are to achieve the long term goal of a low carbon society based on renewable energy by 2050," Christiansen said.

Among its recommendations, the commission said support for renewable energy production should be reduced with a view to phase it out altogether.

"The price of electricity is expected to increase up to 2030, and at the same time expected cost of establishing and running new renewable energy technologies to decrease significantly. The indicates that the price of electricity and production are approaching each other, and that the support can eventually be phased out."

Elsewhere in the report, the commission said greater cooperation with European neighbours would help "provide supply security".

The Danish government's energy minister Lars Lilleholt welcomed the commission's report. "It is common sense and I think the Energy Commission makes some good and clear answers on how to take the next step in Denmark's green transition," he said.

"The Energy Commission's work will be an important contribution to the coming months of preparation of the government's energy proposal, which will be launched in autumn 2017 with a view to negotiating a new energy policy," Lilleholt added.

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