The Swedish government has laid down the key proposals in its energy and climate bill. It includes SEK300 million per annum allocated for energy efficiency initiatives from 2010-14. The government's climate goal is to cut emissions of greenhouse gases by 40% by 2020 based on 1990 levels. By then half of Sweden's energy needs will come form renewable energy resources with a massive expansion of wind power. Sweden's car will run on non-fossil fuel energy sources by 2030.
Swedish enterprise minister Maud Olofsson said that Sweden’s goals were probably the most ambitious worldwide.
Olofsson promised that if Sweden could lead the world in the switch to renewable energy resources then jobs would follow as a result.
We see major investment in the environment and climate initiatives as the way out of the economic crisis, Swedish Environment Minister Andreas Carlgren said.
Carlgren underlined that key to the government’s approach was to provide clear and timely guidelines over policy.
That which is good for the environment shall be cheaper, that which is bad should be more expensive. Carrot and stick.
The ambition is that the tax burden should not increase when the measures are pushed through, Carlgren explained.
One new initiative presented by Maud Olofsson was that small and medium-sized firms should contribute with advice on energy issues.
Here there is an incredible amount of money to be saved, she confirmed. Maud Olofsson finished her introductory comments with a smile and sent a message to future generations:
We did what we could, when we saw how it was.
Andreas Carlgren said We are prepared to raise carbon taxes as much as it necessary to cut emissions by two million tonnes.
Andreas Carlgren added that a rise is not on the agenda at the moment, explaining that the climate bill contained sufficiently tough measures.