Denmark must deliver GREEN solutions

Denmark must deliver GREEN solutions

24 May 2020
Can Denmark be green when we support Baltic Pipe?

Since 2001, Denmark has been in the process of securing Norwegian natural gas (fossil fuel) for Poland and Eastern Europe through the Baltic Pipe project.

In Denmark, the local climate activists from Baltic Pipe NEJ TAK (NO Thanks to Baltic Pipe) have mobilised a unilateral opposition to the project in Denmark. In the midst of the Danish Climate Law negotiations in November 2019, they reminded us that the government signed off on a pipeline which will cut through Denmark from west to each to deliver Norwegian natural gas to Poland.

We hope to see a softening. In November 2019, the Danish energy production company Ørsted proposed the idea of a windmill park off the shores of island of Bornholm in the Baltic Sea - one that can deliver renewable energy for up to 5 million households in Poland, Germany and Denmark.

Siemens Gamesa are also supportive and while Danish climate minister Dan Jørgensen discuss gigabyte, not Watts, we hope this shows his eager to make Denmark and the world more sustainable, not because he doesn't know the difference.

It is investment in sustainable energy which is needed, not the investment in more CO2-emitting infrastructure.

How will Baltic Pipe deliver Norwegian natural gas to Poland?

The current goverment supports the previous government and approved Baltic Pipe - a 230 km gas pipeline which by 2022 will cross DEnmark from west to east to deliver Norwegian natural gas to Polish homes - and while the vast majority have heard of Nordstream 2, who know about Baltic Pipe?

According to NS Energy, the project has 50 year life span ( and will replace Russian gas in Poland with Norwegian gas. It will leave the maintenance bill with Denmark, an increased CO2 foot print and a 400 metres wide belt - that is the equivalent of 100 car lanes side by side - where nothing can take root, likely to avoid potential damage to the pipeline. IN this environmental report it is referred to as a 'narrow belt' (section 1.2.4)

Energy is geo-politics. No doubt about it. German Chancellor Merkel has worked actively to maintain a tolerable relationship with Russia, but for the sake of the health of the planet and our survival we have to change our energy structure.
Geopolitically speaking, it may well be better to have Norwegian gas delivered to Polish homes rather than Russian oil and Norwegian gas may also be better produced than Russian oil with a smaller CO2-emission footprint. Indeed the report states that Baltic Pipe will lead to an overall reduction in CO2-emissions, so why are politicians not discussion this important role that Denmark is playing?

Open and constructive conversation between citizens and politicians must be awakened- politicians must begin to listen to the people on the streets, rather than just those in the board rooms.

Representative democracy is about representing the citizens interests - and be responsible and accountable for the decisions being made.
The COVID-19 pandemic is just the most recent example of a greater need for trust in civil society and better form of communication between citizens and decision makers so we truly move in the same direction.