Samsø, Denmark and Søren Hermansen
On 26 March 2012, the Danish Embassy in Washington, DC hosted an event called "The Renewable Energy Island" as part of the DC Greening Embassies Forum. The Forum is a collaboration of the US State Department, the government of Washington, DC, and the foreign embassies in the city; the intention of the forum is for the embassies and the city to share best practices and to work together to make the city greener and more sustainable. This event highlighted the work of Søren Hermansen and the island of Samsø in Denmark.
Mr. Hermansen discussed the community-level engagement and commitment that has led to the island of 4,000 residents covering over 100% of their electricity and heating needs through renewable energy in just over a decade. Mr. Hermansen provided the background story of how the community of Samsø achieved these results, and situated their efforts within the national and international renewable energy and climate objectives of Denmark. Ms. Anne Mette Vestergaard, Deputy Chief of Mission for the Danish Embassy, provided introductory remarks, and Dominic Marcellino, Fellow at Ecologic Institute, moderated a Q&A session and provided brief comments on work Ecologic Institute has done over the past year underscoring local and regional efforts to support renewable energy.