Jakob Askou Bøss, head of strategy & communication at Ørsted. Supplied
Jakob Askou Bøss, head of strategy & communication at Ørsted. Supplied

Danish wind energy giant Ørsted has decided to phase out its fleet of fossil-fuelled vehicles and transition to a fleet of electric vehicles, expanding the scope of its transformation from reliance on fossil fuels to becoming a leading renewable and green energy company.

Ørsted, the Danish-based power company, is currently known as one of the world’s leading offshore wind energy developers, with its fingers in offshore wind energy projects across the globe.

According to the company, Ørsted has built more offshore wind farms than any other developer in the world, and by 2020 they expect to expand their offshore wind capacity to 7.45 GW with projects in the United States, Taiwan, and across Europe in Denmark, Germany, the UK, and the Netherlands.

The company’s current focus on offshore wind energy comes in part due to its larger transition away from fossil fuels – having reduced its carbon emissions from energy generation by 83%, and well on track to meet its target of a 98% reduction by 2025.

Ørsted says it will now transition its fleet of 340 work vehicles and passenger cars to an entirely electric fleet of vehicles. Currently, 22% of the company’s car fleet is electric, but from 2021, Ørsted will no longer buy or lease fossil-fuelled vehicles and, in 2025, the company’s entire fleet of cars will be 100% electric.

“We’ve made great strides in switching power generation to green energy, and the next big challenge will be the transport sector, which at the moment is predominantly based on fossil fuels,” said Jakob Askou Bøss, Head of Strategy & Communication at Ørsted.

“Fortunately, big technological advances are being made at the moment, making electric vehicles competitive. That is why we’ve decided that, from 2021, we’ll only buy and lease electric vehicles, and that our entire fleet will be electric by 2025.”

With this new commitment to electric vehicles, Ørsted will now also become the first Danish company to join the EV100 global initiative – founded by the Climate Group to “bring together forward looking companies committed to accelerating the transition to electric vehicles (EVs) and making electric transport the new normal by 2030.”

“We’re thrilled to welcome Ørsted onboard as the first Danish company within the EV100 initiative,” said Luke Herbert, international communications director at The Climate Group.

“Climate action requires more urgency, and Ørsted’s targets to achieve a 100% EV fleet within five years is showing impressive leadership in the energy sector and across global business more widely.”

EV100 – along with The Climate Group’s other global initiatives, RE100 and EP 100 – brings together companies from around the world in an effort to accelerate global climate action and support companies looking to contribute and commit to ensuring global warming does not exceed 1.5°C.

Among the companies committed to the EV100 initiative are several New Zealand companies – such as Christchurch Airport, Genesis Energy, Mercury, Meridian Energy, and Air New Zealand, and one Australian company, Australia Post.

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