Clean revolution

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Science  27 Nov 2015:
Vol. 350, Issue 6264, pp. 1020-1023
DOI: 10.1126/science.350.6264.1020

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Denmark—a small, resource-poor country of 5.5 million people—has set the most ambitious climate goal in the world: to become a carbon neutral economy by 2050. And as delegates gather in Paris to hammer out a global agreement to slow climate change, many are looking to Denmark to understand how their nations might also rapidly transform their energy systems. "The Denmark model is really important," says Dan Kammen, an energy policy expert at the University of California, Berkeley. "It's an illustration of what can be done." But Denmark is also helping highlight the potential technical and political obstacles to going green. The nation has struggled to align its bold emissions goal with tax and economic policies, and some aspects of the carbon neutral push have become politically contentious. The experience, says Lars Aagaard, managing director of the Danish Energy Association in Copenhagen, "is certainly not a walk in the park."

  • * in Bornholm, Denmark

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