Greenland’s Priority Is Cutting Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Country Overview

Kalaallit Nunaat (Greenland) is an autonomous territory of the Kingdom of Denmark. The island territory of Greenland is bounded by the Arctic Ocean, Smith Sound, Baffin Bay, Davis Strait, and the North Atlantic Ocean. The population of Greenland is approximately 56,717 people.

In 2022, Greenland’s economy was ranked 155th in the world in gross domestic product (GDP). The country’s economy is dependent on the export of crustaceans, non-fillet frozen fish, processed crustaceans, fish fillets, and fish.

Environment Policies

In 2016, Greenland was granted a territorial reservation to the Paris Climate Agreement, which meant the country didn’t have to comply with the greenhouse gas emissions goals set by the Kingdom of Denmark.

In 2021, Greenland Premier Múte B. Egede said his government would give up Greenland’s exemption from the Paris Climate Agreement and he would seek his nation’s national assemble to commit to objectives for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Power Generation Capabilities

In 2021, 100% of the people in Greenland had access to electricity. In 2021, the territorial power company, Nukissiorfiit used renewable energy (83.3%) and refined petroleum (16.7%) to generate electricity in Greenland. Hydropower is the dominant type of renewable energy used to generate electricity in Greenland.

Recent renewable energy projects in Greenland include:

  • 55 MW Hydropower Project – Nuna Green and Nukissiorfiit are continuing work on extension of an existing hydropower plant at Buksefjorden in western Greenland. The project is forecast to be commissioned in 2029.
  • 45 MW Hydropower Expansion Project – Greenlandic company Nuna Green and the territory power company Nukissiorfiit are continuing work to expand the Nuuk hydropower plant located in southwestern Greenland from 30 MW to 75 MW. The project is forecast to be commissioned in 2029.
  • 90 kW Solar Project – In June 2021, the village of Ikerasaarsuk in Qeqertalik municipality in western Greenland commissioned a photovoltaic solar array to replace the power community’s diesel generator.


In 2000, Greenland used refined petroleum to generate 59.5% of the nation’s electricity. Twenty-one years later, Greenland used refined petroleum to generate only 16.7% of the nation’s electricity.

Greenland imports all the nation’s refined petroleum for power generation, heating, and transportation. In 2021, Greenland imported U.S. $131 Million of refined petroleum.

On 24 February 2022, Russia invaded Ukraine, prompting the European Union, United Kingdom, United States, Canada, Japan, South Korea, Australia, and New Zealand to place economic sanctions on Russian imports and exports. As a result, the crude oil and natural gas prices increased by over 50% from May 2021 to May 2022.

Greenland has significant undeveloped renewable energy resources, including hydropower, solar, onshore wind, and biomass. Moving from diesel fuel power generators to renewable energy will significantly reduce the nation’s carbon footprint.

In September 2022, scientists recorded the greatest volume of ice sheet melt in Greenland’s history. Cutting greenhouse gas emissions is a national priority for Greenland.

Jack Kerfoot

Website – “Our Energy Conundrum”


Jack Kerfoot is a scientist, energy expert, and author of the book FUELING AMERICA, An Insider’s Journey and articles for The Hill, one of the largest independent political news sites in the United States. He has been interviewed on over 100 radio, podcast, and television stations from New York City to Los Angeles discussing a diverse range of energy issues and topics.


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