Denmark may not be a huge player in the green global village, but it is a place that prides itself quite a bit on being...well, a little more eco than its Scandinavian neighbors. Traveling the tidy Danish countryside, the towering wind turbines spinning out clean electricity are your first clue to this pride. The Danes, especially in Copenhagen, seem years ahead in bike culture, organic food and clothing, and just in general in bringing their spare and friendly design aesthetic to much that they do.
So it was a major ego blow when the news hit that a single Danish company, the Moller-Maersk shipping conglomerate, creates as much carbon dioxide emissions from its operations (40 - 50 million tons) as the entire country of Denmark! Global shipping isn't yet counted as part of a nation's carbon footprint. As the International Maritime Organization tries to get a handle on shipping's actual emissions numbers, it is realizing they may be nearly 3 times larger than previous estimates, with big companies like Maersk playing a huge role in the 1.12 billion tons of CO2 emitted annually by shipping. Under EU pressure to work faster to clean up shipping's pollution, the IMO is meeting in Denmark this week and will work in part to figure out how to attribute CO2 emissions to individual nations. Via ::TheCopenhagenPost
P.S. That's Maersk's Emma container ship in the photo above - we wrongly reported she uses 200,000 liters of fuel a day. Thanks MacHaddock for the alert.