Novozymes to become carbon-neutral in Denmark

By Susanne Retka Schill | June 02, 2008
Web exclusive posted June 23, 2008 at 11:38 a.m. CST

Novozymes, a Danish company that supplies enzymes to the U.S. ethanol industry, is striving to become carbon-neutral when it comes to electricity at its Danish facilities as early as 2012. Novozymes announced in early June that it has partnered with DONG Energy AS to reduce its energy use and use the savings to purchase wind energy. Measured in terms of carbon dioxide emission savings, the arrangement is the largest of its kind to date in Denmark. The agreement represents more than 30 percent of a planned Horns Rev II offshore wind turbine park capacity.

According to Peder Holk-Nielsen, executive vice president for enzyme business at Novozymes, this collaboration is remarkable and requires Novozymes to set very ambitious goals for reducing the company's carbon dioxide emissions. "As a socially and environmentally responsible company, we have constantly striven to optimize the energy efficiency of our production for many years," he said. "Now we are taking the next step, and basing our production on renewable energy. Hopefully, we will set a good example for our customers."

"Novozymes stimulates the development of sustainable energy by taking this leadership role and showing that in Danish industry there is a willingness to buy energy from CO2-neutral production facilities," said Lars Clausen, executive vice president at DONG Energy. "The agreement will contribute substantially to increasing the demand for energy produced by wind turbines." The partnership will also require indentifying and implementing significant energy savings beyond what has already been achieved at the company, he added.

DONG Energy is an integrated energy company producing oil and natural gas from the North Sea and providing more than 50 percent of Denmark's electrical power and approximately 40 percent of the district's heat. The company is developing onshore and offshore wind turbines as it expands its renewable energy strategy.