2010 analysis: main findings
According to the 2010 Climate Policy Tracker analysis, Swedenadopts a vision that in 2050 the country will have no net emissions of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. Standards in buildings and incentives for transport are also relatively high. Sweden has (traditionally) relatively strict energy standards for buildings. Renovated buildings need to reach the same standard as new buildings. Sweden has a long history of using biomass, both for heat and power, but also for materials. In 2009, biomass energy overtook oil to become the largest contributor to Sweden’s energy mix. It is regularly used for combined heat and power (CHP) and as heat source in industry. The high share of biomass use is due to high availability and partly due to policy. However, a trajectory to zero energy buildings is not foreseen. However, the concentration on biomass has turned the focus away from electricity end-use efficiency, restructuring industry and investing in infrastructure to support a modal shift. The moratorium on new nuclear capacity was lifted, raising the possibility of increased dependence on nuclear energy and diverting resources away from much needed investment in efficiency and renewables.
- The vision of no net emissions by 2050 should be turned into a full strategy with a legally binding trajectory with little, if any, offsetting of emissions and a coherent action plan including policy incentives to provide long-term certainty for all stakeholders. Ambitious, long-term and binding national targets are set in for example the UK or Ireland.
- Sweden’s strong availability of biomass should not take the pressure off the development of electricity end-use efficiency, restructuring industry and investment in infrastructure supporting modal shift. Also, regulations and governance should be developed to ensure that the domestic production of renewable energies does not undermine biodiversity and ecosystem services. It is therefore of high importance for Sweden to start strongly supporting deployment of energy efficiency, solar and wind energy.