Samsø: A Pioneer Island Pointing to the Future

Mar 16, 2021

10:15am – 11:10am CT

What can the climate urgency translate into at local level? Climate action is about challenging conventional thinking and overcoming the fear of change. But people need a purpose to act. The island community of Samsø, Denmark, home to 3,700 people, embraced a positive perspective for itself and invested in renewable energy. Community engagement, social innovation with local ownership and existing technology made Samsø carbon negative and provided to the community a much better outlook. Once a meeting place in the Vikings period, Samsø is now a gathering place for people interested in community development. Samsø works to become completely fossil-free by 2030 and shows that transformational change happens when a community can see through the cracks and tears a wall down to let the light in.

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photo of Søren Hermansen
Søren Hermansen

Samsø Energy Academy

photo of Elizabeth Kolbert
Elizabeth Kolbert

The New Yorker

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