Friday, April 30, 2010

Russian president gets green welcome

COPENHAGEN. Russian President Dmitry Medvedev visited the Danish capital Copenhagen earlier this week, and as usual the Danes took the opportunity to demonstrate their ambition to be the climate capital of the world.
President Medvedev was taken on a tour of the city’s first public carbon neutral building, the so called Green Lighthouse on the University of Copenhagen campus.
I also spent the week in Copenhagen, doing interviews for my project on the Nordic capitals. I will write a series of blog reports from the Danish capital in the next couple of weeks.
On my way from one new development to another, I jumped off the buss to get a glimpse of the Green Lighthouse (right) on a quiet backyard near the busy Tagensvej. The CO2-neutral building, which opened late last year in time for the United Nations climate conference in Copenhagen, has become one of the symbols of the city’s green ambitions.
The round building stands as an example of what sustainable construction of the future can look like. When it was opened last year, a representative of the university said that the building isn’t an example of “rocket science” but rather of “common sense”.
Three quarters of the energy savings in the building are obtained by its design, for instance an optimal use of sun light. The building is positioned for maximum use of the sun for heating and light. Automatic systems for heating, cooling and ventilation keep energy use at a minimum.
The Green Lighthouse is a public-private venture meant to serve as an example for Danish developers of how they can contribute to Copenhagen’s ambition to become the world’s first carbon neutral capital.
The building is used as a student service center.

Copyright: Russian Presidential Press and Information Service
President Dmitry Medvedev (right) on a tour of the Green Lighthouse.