Denmark, break the curve!
A Curve Breaker Agreement for Denmark’s total energy consumption will be the best role model both for local initiatives and the overall planning of the electricity sector.
For some time, the Danish Energy Saving Trust has been concluding agreements with ministries, regions, municipalities and private companies, all of whom have signed up to reduce their total electricity consumption in so-called Curve Breaker Agreements. By committing themselves to breaking their electricity consumption curve, these institutions are sending a clear signal to the outside world: That they both can and, most importantly, will make a tangible effort for the benefit of the environment.
Public sector institutions which have signed Curve Breaker Agreements are leading the way for the rest of Denmark. The same applies to private sector companies such as Ernst & Young, Lundbeck and DSB.
Politicians should acknowledge the pioneers
A Curve Breaker Agreement for Denmark will be the perfect role model; if a sufficient number of curves are broken in a local capacity, then the curve will also be broken at a national level. Therefore it is vital that politicians across the country acknowledge the pioneering efforts of ministries, regions, municipalities and private companies by committing themselves to a comprehensive target for the whole of Denmark.
This will be a clear recognition of, and inspiration for, local initiatives which must now be integrated in a single national target – in short, a Curve Breaker Agreement which establishes when, and by how much electricity consumption should fall.
n this way, a politically organised target for reducing electricity consumption can be communicated clearly and intelligibly to consumers. Moreover, the target can be effectively monitored, and this is important for its credibility. In similar fashion, a target which addresses the trend in electricity consumption is also a completely natural starting point for the planning of the electricity supply companies’ CO2 quotas as well as the electricity network and production capacity.
Electricity is more than twice as polluting
Electricity is particularly important because fuel consumption and CO2 emissions are more than twice as high in this field as for all other energy forms. If climate targets are to be achieved, there is no getting away from the fact that electricity consumption must fall.
In both Danish building regulations and in energy labelling schemes such as those calculated in the EU, electricity consumption is multiplied by a factor of 2.5 when compared with other energy sources. This is a sure sign that electricity is a very special product which should be used with great care.