Denmark unveils plan to reduce
fossil fuels, double use of renewable energy
Jan 19, 2007 The Associated Press
The government on Friday unveiled plans to cut
the use of fossil fuels by up to 15 percent and
double renewable energy sources within 18 years
- in a drive for cleaner fuel and greater self-sufficiency.
"We must reduce Denmark's dependency on fossil
fuels like oil, natural gas and coal, in the long
term," Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen said.
"One day, stocks will run out, and we must be ready
to supply ourselves."
Fogh Rasmussen said the "ambitious plan" sees renewable
energy, including wind power, hydrogen and biofuels,
as providing up to 30 percent of the country's total
consumption by 2025 _ up from the current 15 percent.
It also pledges to double annual energy research
funds to 1 billion kroner (euro134 million; US$173
million) starting in 2010.
Later this year, lawmakers were expected to vote
on the plan, which requires the approval of the
179-seat Parliament. Fogh Rasmussen said his center-right
Cabinet was seeking broad majority support for the
plan, but the Social Democratic-led opposition criticized
it for being too modest.
Currently, Denmark's main energy source is oil,
representing 42 percent, followed by natural gas
at 23 percent, and coal at 19 percent.
But the small Scandinavian country, which leads
Europe in the use of wind power with rows of massive
windmill turbines cutting through the country and
along the coast lines, wants to further promote
the use of friendlier fuels.
Most of the energy funds would be used for research
on renewable energy sources, the government said.