Danes change habits to cut energy use at home by over 12 percent

The Local Denmark
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Danes change habits to cut energy use at home by over 12 percent
Switching off unused freezers is one of a number of methods by which Danes may have cut their electricity consumption. File photo: Liselotte Sabroe/Ritzau Scanpix

People living in Denmark reduced their electricity consumption by 12.2 percent in September compared to a year earlier.


Private energy consumption figures from state company Energinet, reported by newspaper Kristeligt Dagblad, show that 12.2 percent less electricity was used last month compared to September 2021.

Additionally, the total energy consumption by private homes was just under 9 percent lower in the first 8 months of this year compared to 2021.

“Danes are saving electricity especially at the times of day when it is most expensive,” Jesper Kronborg Jensen, senior business developer with Energinet, told Kristeligt Dagblad.


Consumption has primarily fallen during daytime hours and less so during the night.

Energinet only measures production and consumption and cannot therefore give precise reasons for the change in consumption habits.

But the drop-off is likely because Danes have begun using high-power appliances like dishwashers and washing machines at night, when the cost of electricity is lower, Jensen said. Charging of electric vehicles follow the same pattern, he said.

“Consumption in the private sector has fallen, but mostly in the daytime. It has not fallen significantly at night. And that is probably because Danes are washing clothes and charging their electric cars at the times of day when electricity is cheapest,” he said.

“In my time at Energinet we have not seen the curve of consumption swing as much as it is doing now. It’s an interesting trend,” he said.

Many people in Denmark have sought to reduce their electricity consumption to offset increasing prices of energy and heating, which are expected to persist this winter.


An expert from Aalborg University pointed to other areas in which savings may have been made in comments to Kristeligt Dagblad.

“I also think that some people have looked around and looked at whether they have redundant appliances that are eating up power. For example, an extra chest freezer,” Kirsten Gram-Hanssen, professor at the university’s Department of the Built Environment, said.

But she noted that energy saving is less straightforward for some households than others.

Families with small children might find it “impossible to wash clothes at night and hang it up in the morning, because they have to be out of the door,” she noted.

“There are some people who have a better understanding of the electricity market than others. It makes a difference if you can navigate it,” she said.


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