Car2go coming to Copenhagen

City dwellers sharing eco-friendly cars should be right up the green capital’s alley, but the City Council has no plans to collaborate with Car2go.

Car2go coming to Copenhagen
Thousands are already sharing these small Smart Fortwos in Europe and in the US. Photo: Daimler

If you rather feel like cruising Copenhagen in a car than on a city bike, there is now a cheap and eco-friendly choice in town.

The car sharing company Car2go from the German car manufacturer Daimler launched in Copenhagen on Wednesday and has released 200 small two-person Smart Fortwos in the streets.

You can find your way to a Car2go car anywhere in Copenhagen with an app, that tells you where the nearest car is parked and how to get there.

It costs 3.50 kroner (0.61 USD) a minute to rent the car and 500 kroner (87 USD) for an entire day. Gas, insurance, service and parking is included in the price.

850,000 users worldwide
The cars are already being shared by more than 850,000 people in 26 cities around the world, including Amsterdam, Rome, Berlin in Europe and Miami, Washington DC and Seattle in the US.

Berlingske reports that Car2go has 1,200 users in Denmark and that the company expects to reach more than one million worldwide by the end of 2014.

“Car2go will give Copenhageners freedom to choose the most effective mode of transport no matter time and place,” CEO in Germany, Thomas Beerman, told Berlingske.

“Based on our experience, we expect Car2go to help bring down congestion and CO2 levels, and take some pressure off the limited parking spaces in Copenhagen.”

No CPH contract
Although energy efficient car sharing should be in line with the aim to make Copenhagen a green capital, the City Council announced on Monday that it will not collaborate with Car2go.

The deputy mayor for technical and environmental affairs, Morten Kabell, would only grant a special license to electric city cars, but Car2go believes that electric cars would not be as easy to share as fuel-driven vehicles.

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Copenhagen to miss 2025 zero emissions target

Copenhagen will not reach its longstanding target of becoming CO2 emissions neutral by 2025.

Cyclists on Copenhagen's
Cyclists on Copenhagen's "Lille Langebro" bridge. The Danish capital has admitted to errors in emissions calculations and says it won't be climate neutral in 2025, a long-standing target. Photo by Febiyan on Unsplash

A city councillor told newspaper Jyllands-Posten that the city, which has long stated its aim of becoming the world’s first CO2-neutral capital, would not meet that target as scheduled.

“I won’t need to stand there in 2025 and say ‘hurrah, we’re CO2 neutral’, because I know that CO2 will still be emitted (then),” elected representative Ninna Hedeager Olsen of the Copenhagen Municipality environment section told Jyllands-Posten.

Tourist board Visit Denmark has previously used the emissions goal to market the city, while Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen named the target during the C40 climate summit when it was hosted by Copenhagen in 2019.

But the municipality has included wind energy produced in other municipalities in its calculations on energy sustainability, according to the newspaper report.

This means it effectively still emits CO2 overall.

The company which supplies energy to the city, Hofor, has erected windmills in a number of municipalities outside of Copenhagen. But the electricity produced by these windmills has been used in calculations of CO2 emissions in both Copenhagen and in the municipalities in which the windmills are actually located.

The replication of the energy production in data for different locations can “rightly” be said to be “cheating the scales”, according to Hedeager Olsen.

But that is not the only problem in calculations of the city’s emissions, she also admitted.

“There are loads of things that haven’t been counted,” she said.

The goal to become climate neutral by 2025 was first set by the city in 2012 in a climate plan adopted by the city government.

Copenhagen was the following year awarded the Cities Climate Leadership award for the plan.