Today in Denmark: A roundup of the latest news on Tuesday

Find out what's going on in Denmark today with The Local's short roundup of the news in less than five minutes.

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the latest news on Tuesday
Crown Prince Frederik has been forced to cancel plans to attend the Tokyo Olympics. Photo: Mads Claus Rasmussen/Ritzau Scanpix

Danish study finds fewer than expected allergic reactions to Covid-19 vaccines 

A study conducted in Denmark has found far fewer allergic reactions than expected to the Moderna and Pfizer vaccinations against Covid-19, broadcaster DR reports this morning.

In the study, researchers in Southern Denmark looked at 199,377 people in the region who had received their first dose of one of the two vaccines. A total of 61 people in the study were admitted to hospital due to an allergic reaction following vaccination.

Of these, a total of three people were unable to receive their second dose of the same vaccine as a result of the allergic response.

Local politicians speak out over social media abuse

Politicians in local councils and municipalities have largely confirmed that they are subject to extensive abuse on social media in response to a survey conducted by DR.

Around 60 percent of 634 local councillors who are active on social media told the broadcaster they had been harassed online.

“It could be your hair colour, gender, breasts, body type, it could be the party you are a member of, because you have a different opinion… that means you are a ‘Liberal whore’,” local politician Charlotte Drue Aagaard of the Liberal (Venstre) party told DR.

Striking nurses take part in demonstration

With thousands of nurses currently on strike across the country after a new collective bargaining agreement was rejected earlier in the year, a demonstration is planned today at which they aim to underline their calls for fairer pay.

The left-wing Red Green Alliance party has called for a break in parliament’s summer holiday in order to find an agreement between the nurses’ union, DSR, and the regional and municipal authorities which pay their salaries.


Crown Prince Frederik cancels Tokyo Olympics trip

Crown Prince Frederik, the heir to the Danish throne, has cancelled his planned trip to the Olympic Games in Tokyo after coming into close contact with a person who tested positive for Covid-19.

The Crown Prince, who last month stepped down as an active member of the International Olympic Committee, was scheduled to take part in the games’ opening ceremony on Friday.

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Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Thursday

How Covid helped some Danes kick a cigarette habit, whether mistaken heat cheques need to be returned, and record-breaking energy prices are among the top news stories in Denmark on Thursday.

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Thursday

Mistaken heat cheques may need to be returned after all  

Perhaps don’t spend that 6,000 kroner windfall just yet — the minister of climate, energy, and supply wants to revisit whether people who received heating cheques by mistake should get to keep the money. 

The heating cheques are intended to support households heated by gas as prices soar, but the government used an online database that relies on self-reported information from homeowners to determine who was eligible. That meant some households that have since switched from gas to another heat source, or have even moved to a different residence altogether, received the cheques in error. 

Minister Dan Jørgensen told TV Avisen he’s asking the parties that supported the original legislation behind the heat cheques to discuss ways of recovering the misspent money. The legislation explicitly said that heat cheques sent in error not only should not be returned, but must not be paid back. 

The system’s goal was to get the money in the accounts of people who need it  as quickly as possible without the delay and added expense of an application process, which could also exclude the most vulnerable, broadcaster DR reports

Electricity price on Wednesday broke Danish record

At about 7 pm Wednesday evening, the price of a kilowatt-hour of energy reached 8.42 kroner, the highest figure recorded in the last 12 years according to TV2. 

Daily and weekly averages are also at record levels, Carsten Smidt, director of the Danish Supply Authority, told DR. According to Nord Pool, the electricity market that covers Nordic countries, prices are three times as high as the same period last year. 

“If prices remain at the current level, an ordinary average family with a variable contract will pay 15,000 kroner more this year than last year for their electricity bill,” economist Brian Friis Helmer of Arbejdernes Landsbank told DR. 

READ MORE: Denmark’s energy agency to look at possible saving measures 

Large fire on Amager extinguished

A Wednesday night fire in a pizzeria on Amagerbrogade, the main high street in Amager south of Copenhagen, spread to first floor apartments before it was extinguished, according to authorities. 

The cause of the fire remains undetermined, but no injuries have been reported. 

A kick in the (cigarette) butt: Danish cigarette smokers quit more often, smoked less during pandemic 

According to new research from the University of Copenhagen, more Danish cigarette smokers kicked the habit or reduced their dependence during the height of the pandemic in 2020. 

Smokers bought 20 percent fewer cigarettes on a weekly basis in 2020 than before lockdowns began, and the number of people who quit cigarettes altogether increased 10 percent relative to the year before. 

“We can learn from it that smokers actually react to it when they can see the consequences [of smoking] more clearly right now and here,” University of Copenhagen associate professor Toke Reinholt Fosgaard told newswire Ritzau. 

“You can use prices and make it more expensive to smoke, but you can also try to shift information and awareness around the consequences so that it feels closer,” he added. 

It’s unclear whether the people who quit or reduced their consumption of cigarettes during the pandemic were able to keep it up after 2020, though researchers say they’re hopeful data from 2021 will show a lasting change.

READ MORE: Denmark considers permanent ban on cigarette sales for people born after 2010