SHARE
COPY LINK
For members

TODAY IN DENMARK

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Monday

Find out what's going on in Denmark today with The Local's short roundup of the news in less than five minutes.

People in Denmark have significantly cut back on plastic bag use.
People in Denmark have significantly cut back on plastic bag use. Photo: Ida Guldbæk Arentsen/Ritzau Scanpix

Health service to get billion kroner extra in funding 

Significant extra funding is to be given to the Danish health service after the government and its parliamentary partners last night agreed a deal as part of ongoing budget negotiations.

The deal means a billion kroner has been set aside for additional spending in extraordinary circumstances, and will be used to retain health sector staff and boost hospital capacity.

We’ll have more detail in a report on our website today.

Budget agreement to be presented

The 2022 budget agreement will meanwhile be presented today after a delay to completion of the new finance law was confirmed by the government at the end of last week.

Deals on climate, environment and the health sector were among those secured in recent days, according to broadcaster DR.

Parliament usually votes through the next year’s budget in December, but proposals are normally tabled in early autumn – the original proposal for 2022 was presented at the end of August

‘Concerning’ jump in Omicron cases

Health authorities said on Sunday that the country had seen a “concerning” jump to 183 confirmed cases of the Omicron variant of Covid-19.

The number represented a tripling of confirmed cases in  48 hours, from 18 confirmed and 42 suspected cases on Friday, according to data from the SSI public health institute.

Because it sequences a high proportion of samples, Denmark often detects variant cases more quickly than its neighbours — which does not necessarily indicate higher rates of infection.

SSI’s chief said the increase in Omicron cases was nevertheless “concerning”, adding that “there are now chains of infection where the variant is found in people who have not travelled abroad or been in contact with travellers”.

READ ALSO: Denmark reports ‘concerning’ jump in Omicron cases

Plastic bag use nearly halved in four years

The number of plastic bags used in Denmark has been almost halved since 2017, DR writes.

As many as 343 million such carrier bags were used in the country four years ago – 59 per person – but the figure is now significantly lower.

This year’s number is expected to be around 183 million bags, or 32 per person, according to the report. This also means Denmark is within an EU 2025 target of 40 plastic bags per person.

The figures cited in the report come from the Danish Chamber of Commerce (Dansk Erhverv) and tax agency SKAT.

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.
For members

TODAY IN DENMARK

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Thursday

A possible 'second wave' of Ukrainian refugees, the Moderates downplaying the importance of joining government, and big savings from heat adjustments are among the top news stories in Denmark on Thursday.

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Thursday

Denmark braces for potential ‘second wave’ of Ukrainian refugees 

With much of Ukraine’s infrastructure in shambles after targeted Russian attacks, NATO is telling European countries to prepare to receive more refugees ahead of a harsh winter. In response, municipal governments in Denmark are calling for a new strategy to distribute Ukrainian refugees across the country, broadcaster DR reports. 

Currently, the Danish Immigration Service uses a ‘distribution key’ to decide where to settle refugees — as it stands, larger municipalities are expected to host a number of refugees proportional to their population. 

But Copenhagen municipality in particular says it’s flat out of housing. “They should look at where there are municipalities in the country with empty houses where people can be accommodated, and then distribute according to that instead of distributing according to the size of the municipalities,” Jens-Kristian Lütken, Copenhagen’s ‘mayor’ of employment and integration, tells DR. 

“If there is a new wave of displaced people from Ukraine, they will initially be staying in hotel rooms,” Lütken adds. 

Thus far, 34,945 Ukrainian refugees have been granted temporary protection in Denmark, DR reports. That’s far below initial projections of up to 100,000 from spring 2022. 

READ MORE: ‘Over a quarter’ of Ukrainian refugees in Denmark now working

Moderates downplay importance of joining government 

After another round of negotiations with Mette Frederiksen, Moderate leader Lars Løkke Rasmussen says it’s beside the point if his party joins Frederiksen’s vision of a ‘broad, central’ government, newswire Ritzau reports. 

“For us, it’s not a separate ambition to be part of such a government,” he said outside of the prime minister’s official residence at Marienborg. “Whether we are in or not is less important. But we want to put ourselves in a position where we can influence the content. That’s what matters.” 

However, Rasmussen adds “it strikes me that Mette Frederiksen and I go a long way towards sharing the analysis of what’s good for Denmark.”

Danish municipalities save big with heat reductions 

Beginning in October, almost all Danish public buildings, from schools to town halls, turned the thermostat down to 19 degrees in an effort to save on energy costs as prices skyrocket. A DR survey shows some municipalities generated savings much higher than expected. 

Municipal buildings in Tårnby consumed 20 percent less in October 2022 compared to October 2021, even after compensating for this year’s mild autumn, DR says. And Fredensborg city hall has seen a 45 percent drop in consumption compared to October of the previous year. 

“There are blankets here at the town hall, if there is anyone who thinks that it is too cold at 19 degrees,” Fredensborg mayor Thomas Lykke says. “People are doing breaktime calisthenics and wearing finger gloves, so we try to keep warm, but I don’t see it being a problem for our employees.” 

READ MORE: Energy prices in Denmark rise as winter weather sets in 

Captain Kjær insists Denmark still ‘amazing’ despite World Cup flop

Simon Kjær insisted that Denmark are still a top team despite their dismal 1-0 defeat to Australia which knocked them out of the World Cup at the group stage. 

Denmark had come into the tournament on a high after getting to the semi-finals of last year’s European Championship and beating world champions France home and away in the Nations League.    

But they slumped out of tournament in humiliating fashion, finishing bottom of Group D with just one point and a single goal scored after Mathew Leckie fired Australia into the last 16.    

“We didn’t deliver as a team, massively disappointed but that’s part of football, we were flying very high in the Euro, now we’re pretty far down,” said captain Kjær, who sat out of Wednesday’s match injured.

SHOW COMMENTS