Denmark, the largest producer of hydrocarbons in the European Union, has said it will stop all explorations in its sector of the North Sea and stop producing from existing wells by 2050.

It has also cancelled its latest licensing round, although there was only one applicant. France’s Total withdrew in October.

Danish climate minister Dan Jorgensen said: “”We want to be climate neutral in 2050. And if we are to have any credibility in that, then this is a necessary decision.”

The UK and Norway produce considerably more fossil fuels than Denmark, but neither country is a EU member.

The announcement was greeted by Greenpeace as “watershed moment.”

PHOTO: Dan Jorgensen