When I first learned about the island of Samsø, which lives between Zealand (the island Copenhagen is on) and Jylland (Western Denmark) I knew I had to visit. Samsø is special because it was chosen by the Danish government to be a showcase for renewable energy. The island is completely energy independent and the electricity comes 100% from wind power. There are 11 wind turbines on the island and 10 just off-shore.
The highlight of the trip for sure was when we visited a local farmer named Jens who now owns the 50 m tall wind turbine on his land. I thought we were just going to chat with him about the wind turbine from the ground, but I was in for a huge surprise when he went to get the key, turned off the wind turbine, and told us that we were all going to climb to the top! The view was amazing and it was so cool to see what the inside of a wind turbine is like. Now every time I see one (which is often- there are so many wind turbines in Denmark), I smile to myself and think about the time that I climbed one!
Other sites that we visited included a Heating Plant that runs on straw, The Samsø Energy Academy, and the Samsø Bryghus, which made some pretty awesome local brews. We also visited an abandoned Christmas tree farm that has been turned into a carbon neutral labyrinth (talk about a great idea for reuse). The labyrinth is similar to a corn maze that Americans like to indulge in during Halloween, but to make it more challenging there are little numbered markers throughout the labyrinth that correspond to trivia questions, mostly about geography or energy conservation. If you answer the question correctly than the solution will point you in the right direction to head to the center of the Labyrinth. We divided into groups and I’m proud to say that Lexie, who also goes to Dickinson, was on my team and we finished in record time. Dickinson pride!
Check out photos below!