According to recent data from Danish water suppliers and wastewater utilities, the Danish water sector is on track to offset more greenhouse gas emissions than it emits by 2025. This places the sector ahead of the country’s national targets for achieving climate neutrality. The sector’s efforts in energy efficiency, energy production, wastewater treatment, and the establishment of new forested areas have propelled it towards meeting the climate action plan’s objectives for a greener waste sector and circular economy.

Progress in Balancing Energy Consumption

The latest report reveals significant advancements made by Danish water agencies in balancing energy consumption. The wastewater sector, in particular, has made notable progress and aims to become energy neutral by 2030. Collaboration among various businesses and public-private partnerships has been instrumental in driving new initiatives and fostering a holistic approach to achieving the collective 2030 target within the entire water ecosystem.

Unlocking the Global Potential of Wastewater: 

Globally, less than half of all wastewater is collected and treated before being released back into nature, with only a meager 20 percent undergoing treatment. This highlights a vast potential for wastewater optimization. 

Denmark has taken the lead in addressing this challenge, as 95 percent of its wastewater is treated, often exceeding legal requirements. By considering the combined effects of Denmark’s high-standard wastewater treatment, the country’s water sector may already achieve climate positivity within the next four years. Danish water agencies and industry partners are eager to inspire global counterparts to embrace a large-scale transition in the water sector, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and minimizing its environmental footprint.

Danish Climate Partnerships' Recommendations

Denmark’s 13 climate partnerships have played a crucial role in promoting a greener and more sustainable water sector. These partnerships encompass various branches of Danish business and have recently put forth a series of recommendations to accelerate the transition. 

Lars Schrøder, Director of Aarhus Vand A/S and Deputy Chair of the climate partnership within waste, water, and circular economy, expressed excitement about the sector’s progress.

“A united energy and climate neutral water sector in Denmark is a remarkable goal, which everyone involved is working diligently to achieve. While we continuously need to speed up the innovation and development of even more effective measures improves our water technologies, the reporting once again underlines Denmark’s world leading position.”
Lars Schrøder
Lars Schrøder
Director of Aarhus Vand A/S

Strong Collaboration and International Interest

The Danish Energy Agency expressed enthusiasm and stressed the importance of strong collaboration between the water sector, industry partners, and authorities. The remarkable progress made by the sector has garnered international attention, with other countries expressing interest in the Danish model’s contributions to achieving climate goals. 

“The tremendous teamwork between the different partners on such an important topic is already being echoed internationally. When we present the water sectors headway and the defining role of the Danish Model in our progress, we receive a great amount of interest. The current pace and progress is truly a positive contribution to the environment, the climate and to the general collaboration outside of our own borders.” 
Henrik Hagen Olesen
Henrik Hagen Olesen
Head of the Water Supply Division