Wonderful Copenhagen
Copenhill Copenhagen

Capital of sustainable development

Discover why Copenhagen is known as one of the world’s greenest cities aiming to be carbon neutral by 2025. 

Copenhagen, and the rest of Denmark, have a long-standing tradition of pursuing green solutions and earth harmony living. In this place, continuing sustainable solutions are at the core and the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals readily backed. As the city persists its bid to become the world’s first carbon neutral capital by 2025, its focus on sustainable development is reflected in all parts of society. Here, you can ski down the roof of a green-energy power station, bike on a Bicycle Snake, and go for a dip in the inner harbour area, all year round. 

Denmark’s capital city and many of its citizens have long put sustainability at the top of their agenda. The city, of course, benefits from Denmark’s generous universal health care, education, and social safety system and environmental policies. Yet, already back in 2009, Copenhagen also set out to draft its own ambitious Climate Plan with goals to develop into the first capital city worldwide to become carbon neutral by 2025.  

As a result, the Copenhagen of today outclasses most other capital cities in sustainable development initiatives. It puts substantial emphasis on energy consumption and energy production as well as on green mobility and city administration initiatives. It stresses the importance of innovative public-private partnerships and future-proof urban planning and architectural design - all with the same overall goal in mind: a move towards a future green growth economy with safe, healthy, and liveable places and spaces for the Copenhageners – and its guests - to live and thrive in. 

Copenhagen’s use of technological innovation helped put it well on the path to achieve its carbon neutrality goal and to boost the circular way in which it uses, for instance, its energy and water resources or handles waste. Sustainable solutions have been developed in and for the city, a huge amount of which can be seen everywhere in the street scene. From busy offshore wind turbines in the Øresund Strait between Denmark and Sweden, to an increasing number of electric busses and ‘green wave’ city cycling traffic lights (with digital countdowns and footrests for cyclists at junctions) - the city is packed with green initiatives.  

Facts 

  • The city aims to be the world’s first carbon neutral capital by 2025  

  • Denmark aims to be the world’s first country entirely independent of fossil fuels by 2050 

  • A new district cooling system in Copenhagen takes cold of the harbor water and saves 70% of the energy compared to traditional air-conditioning 

  • An efficient district heating system in Copenhagen has 98 % of all households connected 

  • Increased mobility through integrated transport and cycling solutions has reduced congestion significantly and improved health of Copenhageners. Since 2005, one billion DKK have been invested in bike lanes and super cycle highways and 45 % of the Copenhageners are biking to work or school every day 

  • The city’s buses are increasingly electric, and more and more road surfaces devoted to cycling. In this city bicycling rules, with even members of parliament pedalling to work 

  • Cleaning the Copenhagen harbor has led to attractive urban areas with better quality of life, improved local business life, revenue generation and job creation. Today, the harbour is so clean, that the Locals go swimming in it 

  • Recycling is also taken seriously in Copenhagen with vending-style machines returning a deposit when a can or plastic cup is inserted 

  • More than 70% of Copenhagen’s hotels hold some form of eco-certificate.  

  • Copenhagen’s famous gastro scene are riding the green-wave and organic food makes up 24% of the total food sale in the city 

  • 70% of Copenhagen’s hotel rooms are eco-certified and several venues are heavily focused on sustainable hotel management