Rubbish soon to be burnt at an incinerator in Copenhagen. Photo: Bax Lindhardt/SP/Ritzau Scanpix
Denmark's climate minister Dan Jørgensen said that, with the average Danish resident throwing away 800kg of waste into general recycling a year, people in the country were worse than the European average, which is 490kg.
“Some will say that we are 10 or 20 years late here. In those years, many have known that the Danish waste sector is not delivering on the green front,” he said a a press conference, according to TV2.
“We are changing that now. We will ensure that more is recycled and incinerated.”
He said that the hoped-for 0.7m tonnes reduction in emissions was equivalent to taking 300,000 cars off the road.
Under the agreement, which has the support of all parties except for the Danish People's Party and the New right Party, Denmark's municipalities have half a year to draw up a “death list” of incinerators that will be closed down, reducing Denmark's incinerator capacity from 3.95 million tonnes to 2.6 million tonnes by 2030.
The Social Democrats had previously planned to privatise the waste sector open it to competition, but this plan was stopped by the Red Green Alliance and the Socialist Left Party.