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Denmark to hit scrapped emissions goal

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Denmark to hit scrapped emissions goal
Wind Turbines at the Middelgrunden wind park outside Copenhagen. Photo: Andreas Klinke Johannsen/Flickr
13:20 CET+01:00
Denmark is on track to reduce carbon emissions by 40 percent by 2020 according to new statistics, putting its new right-wing government on track to hit the national target it recently abandoned.
According to the baseline projection issued by the Danish Energy Agency (DEA) on Wednesday, the country is also on track to meet the EU's renewable energy target, and an EU target to reduce emissions from non-ETS sectors. 
 
“It is fantastic news for the climate that we are set to reach the 40-percent target already in 2020,”  Andreas Steenberg, climate spokesman for Denmark's Social Liberal party. 
 
“The Liberal Party has criticized the Social Democratic-Social Liberal government's 40-percent goal — but now I expect that they can stick to the target.” 
 
The DEA said that a rise in electricity consumption and an increased use of biomass had brought the country on track to hit the target, following last year's report when it was in line to reduce emissions by only 37 percent. 
 
Jens Joel, environment spokesman for the opposition Social Democratic party, told The Local that the unexpected good news should not stop the government from implementing more initiatives. 
 
“The point is that they have no target. They just got lucky,” he said. “We have EU obligations and now we have the Paris agreement. That means we will have to deliver eventually, and there's much more job creation and growth potential in having a competitive edge in green technology than in not having it.” 
 
According to the DEA's new figures, Denmark will easily beat its EU target of generating at least 30 percent of gross final energy consumption from renewables by 2020, with the country on track to be generating an impressive 40 percent. 
 
The DEA cautioned that the encouraging projection did not mean the target would necessarily be achieved, saying its sensitivity analysis pointed to the country reducing emissions by 35 percent to 44 per cent by 2020. 
 
 
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