This speech was written for Danish Minister for Climate, Energy and Building, Martin Lidegaard to be delivered at Launch of New Offshore Wind Turbine Prototype at VESTAS, Kerteminde, Denmark, August 29, 2013.
Setting Green Sails
The climate is changing and as a result Denmark has set our sails for a green transition of the entire energy sector.
Wind is absolutely crucial and absolutely central for our journey. Wind power is the great flagship of our green fleet. Wind power is the green fuel of our great force. Without wind power the Danish green transition would look completely different. Wind power is an important part of Danish energy policy.
When this government looks toward the horizon we see a fossil fuel free energy system in 2050 – a Danish society based entirely on renewable energy. That is our guiding star. But as in any journey across the sea, there are always considerations to be made, alterations in the course, adaptations to changing weather, wind and water. Set backs and successes.
In 2012 we made an energy agreement that result in 50 % wind power in the electricity consumption in 2020. We did it with wide political support to secure a stable foundation to build on for the years to come – thereby drawing the contours of the necessary green transition. And we did it in a way that promotes green growth. Today is proof of that. Offshore wind turbines are set for a bright future of innovation, progress and green energy.
Today we celebrate Vestas’ new 8 mega watts offshore wind turbine. It is a perfect symbol of innovation, progress and green energy. A symbol of the combination between necessary climate action and good business. It is an impressive machine and I hope that it will do well, that it will open up for new export opportunities for both Denmark and Vestas.
Denmark is known throughout the world for its wind turbines. We are good at it – in every aspect. We have a big talent pool of highly skilled and experienced workers. We have up-to-date knowledge, innovation and research. We have state of the art wind turbines from some of the leading turbine producers in the world.
Like any of the classic explorers, nothing can stop us when the wind is in our back. And like any of the great explorers the challenge arises when the wind stops. When the sails just hang and when the turbines stop spinning.
But in Denmark we are also blessed with connecting wires to our neighbouring countries. Here we exchange our wind for their hydropower or import energy when the blow is low. We are working hard to bring Denmark even closer to other countries with infrastructure, market integration and common regulations. That too is what will bring us forward.
All of the great voyages start at a shipyard. It is a place of promise. And so I want to take a moment to appreciate where we are standing today. Odense Steelship Yard – more precisely the Lindø yard – is a monument to what used to be one of Denmark’s leading forces – namely shipbuilding. Today the Lindø yard is still at the front of Danish entrepreneurship – but now it is green energy and wind, they built. Another adventure in the making.
I wish you all – all the best. To the Lindø shipyard and all the people working here. To VESTAS with your new 8 mega watts wind turbine and the nacelle prototype. To Denmark with a solid green transition and green growth. And to the world with a map for climate friendly business to follow.
You are ready to set sails. I wish you the best of wind.