In 2011, Denmark publicized its Energiy2050 vision, a plan which would build a supply/demand system for renewable energy and cover all of the country’s energy consumption (electricity, heating, hot water, industry, and transport) by 2050.
On March 22nd, 2012, all political parties agreed on a resolution creating the Energi 2020 Policies, a set of measures that will serve as a milestone towards the Energi 2050 plan. This agreement is a set of energy policies for the period spanning 2012 to 2020. The agreement described the trajectory of future energy policy and created a foundation and political framework geared towards generating the funds necessary for the spread of renewable energy, improvements in energy efficiency, adjustment of energy systems, implementation of new clean energy technologies, and research and development.
The main targets for this policy are as follows:
- Reduce energy consumption by 12% over 2006 total (this would amount to a reduction of total energy from 864PJ to 760PJ)
- Achieve 35% renewable energy usage (effectively doubling renewable energy production)
- Achieve a ratio of 50% wind generated power versus electric consumption (total stands at 28% in 2014)
The following policies are to be launched in order to realize the targets above:
- Increase energy efficiency: a crucial element to increasing the proportion of renewable energy that is used. In addition, with energy prices increasing today, better energy efficiency is economically advantageous, whether for industry or home use. The following policies are being executed with respect to the above: 1) starting in 2015, energy companies (power providers, local heating companies, etc.) to increase their energy conservation efforts (e.g., advising consumers and providing subsidies) by 100% over the 2010-2012 period; 2) propose comprehensive strategies for energy reform of homes and prepare for rising energy costs.
- Provide sustainable green energy based on renewable energy: 1) increase wind power facilities to cover annual energy consumption of 1.5M homes and use renewable energy to cover 50% of all power consumed – a) by 2020, install enough offshore wind turbines to cover 1,000MW and coastal turbines to cover 500MW; b) demolish old terrestrial turbines or update with new large-format equivalents and achieve 1,800MW total output by 2020 (an increase of 500MW); 2) appropriate 100M DKK for a four-year period as subsidies for the increased use of solar and hydro power, and 25M DKK for the development of hydro-power technologies.
- Transition in phases to the use of “green heat”: specifically, 1) revise Heat Supply Law to promote use of green fuels (moving from coal to biomass) for co-generation at central power plants; 2) allow small regional heating companies with few users to generate heat via biomass (note: following the development of gas fields in the North Sea, the use of natural gas is now compulsory. In particular, small-scale suppliers in some regions are struggling with the rising cost of heating fees pursuant to rising fuel costs.); 3) appropriate 35M DKK for the promotion of geothermal energy and heat pumps.
- Promoting use of renewable energy in homes: 1) as of 2013, installation of oil and gas burners in new homes is banned; 2) beginning in 2016, installation of oil boilers banned in regions where local heating facilities or natural gas are already available; 3) appropriate 42M DKK for subsidies towards existing (non-new) homes transitioning from natural gas or oil boilers to renewable energy (effective 2012-2015); 4) launch new public awareness campaigns for the spread of renewable energy.
- Promoting enterprise use of renewable energy: 1) appropriate 250M DKK annually (2013) for investment subsidy schemes for the use of renewable energy in production processes, with an appropriation of 500M DKK annually from 2014 to 2020. 2) appropriate 30M DKK annually for the promotion of factory-based co-generation.
- Smart grid: Intelligent control of power supply and demand is essential for mass deployment of power from sources like wind, where the output produced is not steady, so a comprehensive set of plans for use of a smart grid is to be made. The project would make decisions on power grid companies and the installation of smart meters.
- Biogas: Is a stable source of energy, so it is key as a backup to wind and solar power generation; biogas therefore plays a crucial role in the Energi 2020 policies. The 2020 target for biogas output is 18PJ. This is equivalent to four times the annual output for 2012. In addition to providing a subsidy system for the use of biogas or electricity generated from biogas, the Energi 2020 policies include several other measures:
- Facilities using only biogas fuel for power generation would be encouraged to move from Feed-In Tarrif (FIT) systems to Feed-In Premium ones;
- Enabling natural gas companies to enter the biogas production sector;
- Creation of a task force for the achievement of biogas production targets and support of new biogas projects
The above constitutes a summary of the Energi 2020 policies. In 2018, two years before the 2020 deadline is reached, Denmark will be holding further discussions on the shape of policy post-2020.
Energi 2050 vision:
Energi 2020 policies: