Denmark has long championed the transition to more sustainable energy sources, and that is being reflected in a steep decline in coal consumption at a national level.
New figures from the Energistyrelsen energy agency reveal that Danish coal consumption fell by 25.5 percent from 2016 to 2017, while the utilisation of sustainable sources rose by 11.4 percent over the same period.
“It’s good news that energy from coal has dropped by more than a quarter in 2017. Despite the fluctuation from year to year, it shows that it’s going in the right direction in terms of restructuring the coal-powered power plants and the government’s goal to completely phase out coal by 2030,” said the energy minister, Lars Christian Lilleholt.
Taking a toll on coal
The report (here in Danish) showed that Danish consumption of coal has fallen by 81.4 percent since 1994, while oil consumption has declined by 89.5 percent.
One of the principal factors in the significant decline in coal consumption from 2016 to 2017 is the transition to biomass at the central power plants, as well as a considerable increase in wind power utilisation.
It all adds up to a 38.3 percent decrease in CO2 emissions in Denmark compared to 1990.
“The figures speak for themselves. When we manage to replace coal with sustainable energy, we end up emitting less CO2. And in 2017, the figures are so comprehensive that there is no doubt that the development is moving in the right direction for our climate,” Lilleholt said.