By Lars Chr. Lilleholt, Danish Minister for Energy, Utilities and Climate
Denmark’s total emission of greenhouse gasses will be reduced by app. 40% in 2020 compared to 1990 levels. One way we can inspire other countries to speed up the green transition is by sharing our experiences on energy efficiency and renewable energy sources. Danish experts are currently assisting energy and climate authorities in countries like China, Indonesia, Mexico and South-Africa. Effective use of waste heat, cogeneration, and district heating planning are often integrated parts of many of these cooperative solutions. The Paris Agreement and the strong focus on cost-effective reduction of CO2 emissions show that the export potential of energy technology is huge. Danish energy technology exports last year increased by 10.7 percent and now comprise 12 percent of total Danish exports. In total we exported for more than 74 billion DKK in 2014. Danish energy associations have estimated that our energy technology export could double to key markets – like the EU and the US – by 2030. I am confident that this ambitious goal can be met by a targeted cooperation between companies, organizations, authorities and our embassies. Furthermore I am glad to see companies and investors across the world increasingly realize that the transition to a green economy must go hand-in-hand with good business practices. Although we still are in the beginning of 2016, I have already visited China and discussed enhanced cooperation with the Chinese National Energy Conservation Center on pilot projects on energy savings and district heating. The more we showcase the Danish energy solutions, the bigger the potential for export to the Chinese. I look forward to the coming year where the Danish energy sector will increase exports and create more jobs in Denmark.
“Trillions of dollars will be invested in infrastructure in the coming years. Governments and the private sector must align their investment and infrastructure decisions with the goal to limit the temperature rise well below 2 degrees, even 1.5 degrees Celsius”. This was UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s statement when he addressed global business leaders at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland on 21 January 2016. Ban Ki-moon referred to the “Paris Agreement on Climate Change” which was adopted by 196 parties at the COP21 Climate Conference in December 2015. A keystone for the successful outcome was laid in the lead-up to the Conference where more than 180 countries published national climate plans; so-called Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs). Whilst not enough to limit the global warming to 2 degrees, these contributions created a strong momentum encompassing both developed and developing countries. The Paris Agreement also included an ambition mechanism that will be central for raising the global ambition level in the years to come. From a business point of view the INDCs provide a substantial market opportunity. The International Energy Agency has estimated the full implementation of the INDCs will require the energy sector to invest 13.5 trillion USD in energy efficiency and low-carbon technologies towards 2030. To support implementation, developed countries have pledged to mobilize 100 billion USD from both public and private sources per year from 2020 in support for low-carbon growth and climate resilience in developing countries. In short, The Paris Agreement gives the private sector an unprecedented opportunity to invest and create clean energy as well as climate resilient economies. Seen from a Danish perspective the result of the COP21 is a game changer. Denmark is in the middle of the green transition and the baseline projection from December 2015 shows that
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