Energy and research policy on the agenda

UNEP DTU contributed to a conference on energy and research policy in Denmark leading up to major political decisions.

April 9, 2018

Politicians, energy researchers and companies gathered at the Energy and Research Policy Conference in UN City in Copenhagen on 9 April to discuss the role of energy research in the future.

During the Conference, UNEP DTU presented findings based on our work on the UN Environment Emissions Gap Reports and stressed the importance of more action on energy and climate.

Based on UNEP DTU research, participants in the conference were given an overview of where Denmark and the world currently is in the struggle to save our climate, and more importantly, where we need to be and how to get there.

The conference coincides with major political events in Danish energy policy. The government is in the process of negotiating a new energy agreement, while the parliament in 2018 will decide on the level of funding for the energy research of the coming years.

A long way to go

Head of the Climate Resilient Development programme at UNEP DTU, Anne Olhoff, explained that Denmark, and indeed the world, still has a long way to go, if the global climate goals are to be achieved.

To reach the climate goals and keep the rise in global mean temperatures below 2 degrees, we need investments and partnerships. However, if we manage to exploit the potential of using energy and climate technology to reduce emissions, there is also good news, Anne Olhoff explained to the participants.

Even with existing technology, it would be possible to not only meet the global level of emissions in 2030 required to be aligned with the long term goals of the Paris Agreement, but to exceed them.

Global focus on energy

DTU organized the Energy and Research Policy Conference in the UN City, with the purpose of sharpening the Government and Parliament’s expectations for the energy agreement and the role of energy research in maintaining Denmark’s strengths in the field of energy.

For many years, Denmark has been considered an international leader in energy research, export of energy technology and green transition, but in recent years, this position has been threatened, among other things by reductions in funding for energy research since 2010.

At the same time, there is an increased focus globally on energy research and development of technologies. The DTU conference sought to answer the question of how we ensure that both long-term energy research and enterprise-oriented demonstration projects will play a role in the future in Denmark.

The energy, supply and climate ministers Lars Christian Lilleholt, a number of politicians, representatives from companies and energy research communities attended along with representatives of international energy and climate communities such as UNEP DTU.

Participants in the conference were provided with insights into global trends in energy consumption and production and global climate challenges.