Samsø Energy Academy
A Fossil Free Island (Denmark)
Søren Hermansen is a world-class Danish energy magician. Søren Hermansen, a native islander, spearheaded his community's efforts to become 100 percent energy independent and prove to the world that it is possible for communities to become self-sufficient. And the mission succeeded.
Samsø Island has received international recognition for leading the world in sustainable alternative energy, producing 10 % more than its 6,000 residents use each year, and was recently featured in The New Yorker magazine.
In 2009, Søren Hermansen received the Gothenborg Prize -- the Nobel Prize of the environmental field. Today, Søren directs the Samsø Energiakademi (Samsø Energy Academy) that teaches citizens around the globe to live sustainably.
Samsø has a new attraction – the Energy Academy close to the picturesque harbour village and tourist magnet Ballen. Samsø has amassed a great deal of concrete experiences with the implementation of a broad variety of local renewable energy project, from wind turbines to CO2 neutral district heating plants, rapeseed oil tractors and solar energy panels.
This experience can be drawn upon through the Academy and research workers and scientists from at home and abroad spend time at the Academy doing research based on the easy access to all these different energy systems, where windmills, straw-based districting heating and thermal solar panels systems and the people who initiated them are close at hand.
The Academy also functions as a conference centre where companies, scientists and politicians can discuss renewable energy, energy savings and new technologies.
Samsø Energy and Environment Office, Samsø Energy Agency and the Samsø branch office of the Danish Energy Service reside in the Energy Academy. From this common domicile, they run a broad spectrum of energy counselling services for commercial and private customers, organize guided energy tours, workshops and seminars and generally promote ‘energy tourism’ for energy professionals.