Blown Away

Countries in Scandinavia gain wealth through their plentiful, yet narrow variety of raw materials. With an abundance of iron ore, oil, and beech trees, the nations have no difficulty in maintaining a strong economy through international trade. Unfortunately, natural resources can be depleted or lose value in an ever-changing market. In order to plan for the future, when oil resources are depleted and/or become obsolete, Denmark and other countries must discover new natural resources to enhance profitability and maintain economic health. Dong Energy, a Danish energy company, has solved this potential issue by committing its focus and resources to wind power. This innovative thinking and efficient utilization of a limited variety of available natural resources reflects Scandinavia’s history of sustainability and inventiveness.

Dong Energy is in the process of refocusing its portfolio, divesting its oil and gas business unit to focus more on offshore wind power. Factors driving this transition include the environmental benefit of decarbonisation, replacing an aging capacity, maintaining a security of supply, and creating local jobs. The decreasing value of oil and gas as well as a desire to have a competitive edge in renewable energy have incentivized Dong to make this major adjustment.

Because offshore wind power is relatively new, with the first-ever installation off the coast of Denmark in 1991, Dong Energy must invent their own technology and methods, developing new and increasingly efficient ways to maximize energy output and minimize cost. Dong has been achieving this cost efficiency by increasing turbine size, effectively reducing the number of foundations required per gigawatt of energy produced. The company has used its competitive supply chain to maintain lower cost and limit risk, as newer and different parts are needed with each structural development.

Dong Energy’s focus on renewable energy, innovative ideas, and methods of cost-savings will help to maintain Scandinavia’s ability to use its natural resources to support its economy. Without its history of economic success through the export of raw materials and other resources, Denmark and the rest of Scandinavia would not be the successful region that it is today.