Denmark wishes to conduct the EU Presidency as sustainably as possible. This will take place by reducing the direct environmental impact of meeting activities simultaneously by displaying social and economic responsibility. In this way the Danish EU Presidency will support the positive development in the area of sustainable and innovative thinking in Denmark.

Certification of the Danish EU Presidency

The central logistics team in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is operating with the ambitious target of achieving certification of the management structure in the context of the crosscutting logistical activities in accordance with the ISO20121 standard.

A sustainability policy has been drawn up as a key part of the certification. The policy has been formulated on the basis of the Copenhagen Sustainable Meetings Protocol, developed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs together with private partners in 2009-2010.

Logistical preparations

Sustainability is an integral part of all stages of planning and implementing the Presidency, and choosing sustainable solutions in conducting the Presidency is emphasised. Therefore, contracts and tender documents for suppliers to the Presidency contain sustainability requirements.

A number of concrete initiatives will contribute to sustainability. For example, tap water will be served instead of mineral water, public transport and joint bus transportation will be used to the greatest possible extent, there will be compensation for local CO2 emission, environmentally certified hotels will be used, and eco-friendly products will be purchased for the conference centres.

Collaboration and networks

The Presidency lasts for six months and there are major sustainability benefits to be gained from using the Presidency as a lever to underpin sustainable development in Denmark. This is why the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is collaborating with a number of partners with a view to supporting positive development through dialogue and cooperation.

Among other things, sponsor agreements have been entered with enterprises that provide cleantech solutions for the Presidency. The wind turbine industry is delivering green power, Danfoss and Grundfos are providing the meeting centres with energy-saving technology, and DHL is supplying CO2 neutral freight.

This means that the Presidency is being used to showcase sustainable technology, which forms part of the logistical implementation of the Presidency. An agreement has been entered with EUREST to supply sustainable food at no additional cost, which is an example of the fact that it is possible to improve the sustainability profile without it costing more.

Denmark as a green conference country

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is part of the Danish Sustainable Events Initiative, which is a consortium with the goal of consolidating Denmark’s position as a green destination

In addition to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the consortium consists of Wonderful Copenhagen and Visit Denmark as key partners as well as a number of organisations and enterprises with a stake in the initiative.

The consortium draws up a joint sustainability report in which initiatives taken by the individual partners are described to give an overall picture of the national sustainability contribution. More detailed information about the sustainability contribution can be found at the link above.

One of the important objectives of the sustainability initiative is to demonstrate that a large-scale project such as the EU Presidency can be organised sustainably without any additional costs, and it is the hope that the experience and initiatives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs together with the ISO20121 certification will serve as inspiration for others.

In this way the Presidency can contribute to improvements in the area of sustainability that extend beyond the six months of the Presidency.

Video: Our journey to make the EU Presidency more sustainable

What you can do

  • The Danish Presidency encourages offsetting CO2-emmissions from air travel
  • Use public transportation
  • Eat your meals in restaurants that serve sustainable menus