Denmark has led the charge for renewable energy, but now the green policies have become too expensive.
In 2015, Denmark set a new world record by generating the equivalent of 42.1% of the country’s total energy consumption by wind. Denmark is also the world’s largest exporter of wind power equipment. So it’s fair to say that Denmark is perhaps the world’s leading wind power nation.
In 2012 a 95% majority in the Danish parliament arrived at a political agreement for 50% of energy consumption to be from wind power by 2020, and 84% by 2035.
The Danish government has now completely changed its mind.
Recently, the Danish government decided to abort the plans to build five offshore wind power farms, which were to stand ready by 2020. At the same time, Denmark is also scraping its green energy tariffs and abandoning some of its climate goals.
“Since 2012 when we reached the political agreement, the cost of our renewable policy has increased dramatically,” said Minister for Energy and Climate Lars Christian Lilleholt to Reuters.
The cost of subsidizing wind power has become increasingly heavy as energy prices in the Nordic countries have fallen dramatically over the last couple of years, making the renewable alternatives a lot less attractive.
Danes pay some of the most expensive electric bills in the world.
The Danish consumers and companies pay the highest prices for electricity within the European Union, EU, according to an analysis from the European Electricity Association, Eurelectric.
The analysis showed that in 2014 a staggering 66 percent of the average Danish electricity bill went to taxes and fees, 18 percent to transportation and only 15 percent of the price was for the electricity in itself. Only Germany came close with 52 percent in electricity taxes.
Without all these extra costs Danes would pay below the European average for their energy.
“We can’t accept this, as the private sector and households are paying far too much. Denmark’s renewable policy has turned out to be too expensive,” the climate minister said.