COPENHAGEN, Sept. 8 (Xinhua) -- Denmark is not in an energy supply crisis yet but looking at a winter when Denmark and Europe both risk running out of energy, Dan Jorgensen, the country's minister for climate, energy and utilities, told a press conference here on Thursday.
At the event, the government outlined a set of measures it plans to implement to prevent an energy supply crisis and presented recommendations to help citizens and businesses reduce their energy consumption.
"Prices can rise further, and in the worst case we risk being in a situation where there is a definite lack of energy. Currently, we can still buy gas from Germany," said the minister.
According to the minister, electricity and gas prices increased fivefold in August year-on-year. Currently, Denmark's gas storages are 95 percent full.
Public buildings in the country should be heated to a maximum of 19 degrees Celsius this winter, the government has decided. The new rule enters into force on Oct. 1.
The minister called on all government employees to help save energy by turning off all unnecessary outdoor lighting on public buildings, such as decorative and seasonal lighting, this winter.
Simon Kollerup, minister for industry, business and financial affairs, said that the government had agreed with Parliament to provide 100 billion Danish crowns (13.4 billion U.S. dollars) in guarantees to the country's electricity companies to ensure stability on the power market.
"It is a state guarantee that protects consumers and ultimately supports security of supply," Kollerup said.
The measure enables businesses to obtain state guarantees on large bank loans, he said.
At the same event, Kristoffer Bottzauw, director general of the Danish Energy Agency, said that the country's households and hospitals will be given top priority if there is a power shortage this winter.
He said he did not anticipate blackouts, but if they occur, they will be "controlled and rolling."
"In short, the most important tip for saving is to prepare your home for winter. You could seal the windows, improve the insulation, turn down the heater and limit the use of hot water," he said. ■