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Air pollution from industry production

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Danish companies obtain the most green patents

Known to be among the globe's most sustainable, Danish companies are number one in obtaining green patents in both Europe and the US over the past ten years.

Every year, companies invest millions in improving their products and processes. In 2020 alone, Danish companies spent almost $ 144 million on research and development.

To protect products and ideas from being copied, companies apply for intellectual property rights through a patent. This gives them exclusive rights to a product or a process.

“The companies are in fierce global competition, and it is important to protect the good ideas. Most companies are therefore aware that they must take out a patent for their ideas and products” Jan Hylleberg, Deputy CEO. Director of Green Power Denmark.

 

Patents indicate Danish stronghold in green energy

Green Power Denmark has – with the help of the Danish Patent and Trademark Office – reviewed the green patents that have been published at the European Patent Office (EPO) and the US Patent Office (USPTO).

Danish companies have obtained 551 green patents at the European Patent Office in 2021. This corresponds to 93 green patents per million inhabitants, cementing a solid first place when compared to 24 other western countries.

Denmark is also number one at the US Patent Office (USPTO), with Switzerland, Japan, Korea and the US close behind.

“We are particularly strong in green energy, and many of the patents have arisen due to our global leadership in the development of highly efficient wind turbines” Jan Hylleberg

 

Danish wind giants lead the way

Patenting of technology plays a decisive role for Denmark and Danish companies when goods and services are to be exported. This applies not least to technologies related to the green transition, where Danish companies have a clear leading position measured on green patents.

Unsurprisingly, wind energy is a Danish position of strength and also plays a decisive role in the total number of patent applications. Here, Vestas leads the way with most green patents applications, while closely followed by Siemens Gamesa and LM Wind Power. Together, these three companies stand for more than half (51%) of all Danish patent applications within green industries.

 

Number of green application per company (2022)

Source: Danish Patent and Trademark Office

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Sound of Green, a podcast series with insights from Denmark’s green transition

27 January 2023
From managing cloudbursts to setting up climate partnerships, we examine how Denmark has turned acute climate challenges into new opportunities. In our podcast series Sound of Green, experts convey how Danish experiences can push the needle toward global green transition. Find it on Spotify, Apple Podcast and stateofgreen.com.