Climate Tour: Denmark 2015

-Contributed by Sue Inches

A study tour to Denmark, the world leader in sustainability and renewable energy, is being planned for Aug.30-Sept 6. Denmark is a small country of 5 million people with similar natural resources to those we have in Maine. There’s a lot we can learn from our visit there.

During the 1970s the Danes realized they were completely dependent on imported oil. They made an immediate commitment to work towards energy independence, and are now world leaders in addressing climate change. They’ve reduced oil consumption by over 1/3 since 1971. They’ve reduced auto traffic in Copenhagen by 19%, by building bicycling infrastructure. They’ve become a major exporter of parts and equipment for the wind energy industry. They’ve decentralized energy generation, with many local and regional wind and biomass facilities now in operation. Their national goal is to become “net zero” nationwide by 2050.

On the tour, we’ll visit towns that have achieved “net zero” status; we’ll speak with planners in the City of Copenhagen who have a goal to become net zero by 2025; and we’ll visit local biomass, wind, and combined fuel power plants. A diverse itinerary is planned, with several days in Copenhagen, a day or two in the Jutland region and a day and night on Samso island.
According to trip organizer Sue Inches, the trip can accommodate up to 15 people and is filling well, with a few spaces still remaining.  Among the organizations participating are GrowSmart Maine, Coastal Enterprises and Slow Money Maine. If you are interested in learning more please contact Sue at Information is also posted at We would love to have you join us!

This is an educational trip to learn from the experience of Denmark, the world leader in sustainability and renewable energy. We will engage with Danish business, community and government leaders, and learn how Denmark has reduced fossil fuel use by over 1/3 since 1971. By traveling together, a cohort of up to 14 decision makers from New England’s private, non-profit and public sectors will be inspired by what they learn in Denmark and return motivated to take action in our communities.