December 7, 2009
Island in Denmark produces more energy than it consumes

Watch all the videos from Worldfocus’ signature series: Green Energy in Denmark.

Worldfocus’ John Larson has been reporting on Denmark’s forward-thinking energy policy, as the small Scandinavian nation plays host to the Copenhagen summit.

Here, he journeys to Denmark’s Samso Island. In 1998, Samso, population 4,000, won a national contest with a bold plan to completely switch to renewable energy.

In just ten short years, the island has achieved its goal of becoming carbon-neutral. Residents use wind, sun — and even rapeseed oil — to power their homes and cars.




I was born and raised on Samso and it is one of the most beautiful places in the world. I am so proud of what they have accomplished.
My hope is that we can all help in some way,an example is solar ovens for cooking in developing countries where wood is scarce and women often spend the whole day looking for fuel.
California, where I live now, has plenty of sunshine to dry clothes on a clothesline, although people still use thier dryers everyday to dry thier clothes. Every little bit helps, and Samso is an example of what is possible when everyone works together.


Wow! My great grandmother and grandfather are from samso… I am very proud of it’s achivements! Hopefully this will serve as an inspiration to us here in the us to think together to solve very serious energy problems and god forbid get to know our neighbors in the process!


excellent posting. the way you write is great. thanks. adding more information will be more useful.



[…] energy, including burning locally grown straw. To see more about Samso, you can watch this video by John Larson( for those with long Alaskan memories, John is a former News Director for KTUU-TV in […]


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Imagine every Jerry Springer turned into Jay Leno (residential wind) or the retired Phil Donahue (Green Party). How about Bill Moyers? Of course, media messages could influence much. However, media programming is a feedback reflection of the underlying problem of the corporate limited liability culture (CLLC). Historically, the CLLC overwhelmed and dismantled the democratic culture, as spelled out in the film, “The Corporation” and related books. Ralph Nader was kind of contemporary yardstick around this, while Michael Moore, Juliet Schor, Rev Billy, and “No Impact Man” form more recent ones.
Heck, we’ve really got plenty of material of our own out there to make the rest start to wake up out of their ad-induced stupor.


[…] Read more: Island in Denmark produces more energy than it consumes | Worldfocus […]


Well said, Jo! What is lacking in the U.S., is focus on “communal well-being.”


The star studded celebrity world with its glitter, & taudry baubbles has captured the US. The profiled Danes were thoughtful, focused on their communal well being, & to me were so much more attractive role models than multiple American celebrities like, Jerry Springer. Many of us Americans give too much of our thoughts and valuable time to unsatisfying low grade entertainment. It’s like throwing our pearls before swine.


It’s a different culture in Scandinavia – more enlightened. More common sense.


Samso is a function of several things — favorable government rates on wind power, a consistent government policy on energy consumption (tax), and a population willing to look to the future, When Denmark decided to encourage wind power, the government set consistent, favorable rates for a long period of time (10 years and beyond). That allowed people to get loans and invest. In this country, there is no national policy or rate — it is subject to change with every state, juristiction, private power company lobbying effort, or election. Samso, however is more than wind power. It is an example of the power of far sighted grass roots politics. People are more inclined to act when they own a part of the solar farm, bio plant, or windmill. Large corporate interests do not play a role, thus there is less “Not in My Back Yard” syndrome. John Larson, Correspondent






It all depends on both the will of the leader and desires of the people. If the leader has the will but lack the support of the people, it will never happen. If the people desire for it but the leaders do not want it, it leads no where.


This interesting story tells us that Samso Island could sell their renewable power to the Danish utilities for enough to pay for their investment. What rate were they being offered, and how does it compare to US utility rates? Clearly, US rates aren’t sufficient or we would be doing this too – but how far are we from this utopia??


If the Danes can do it, why can’t we? Instead of making the U.S. independent of oil, our money goes to the war in the Middle East. There is a way when there is a will.


Drew forward this to Steven

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