Swedish sustainable energy policy
STOCKHOLM, Jan 10(SCBR)–Swedish energy policy aims for sustainable
development and energy security.
The Government’s long-term energy policy priority is to design an energy system that combines ecological sustainability with competitiveness and security of supply. The challenge of climate change, closely linked with energy, is one of the major challenges facing society. Tackling this challenge requires investment in new technologies. The Government’s investments in research and innovation, combined with a positive business climate that encourages innovation and investment in the energy and environment field, contribute to growth, new jobs, and good export opportunities in the energy and environment sectors. And the results contribute to a better environment.
On 19 October, Minister for Information Technology and Energy Anna-Karin Hatt presented a bill to the Riksdag entitled Research and innovation for a sustainable energy system. The bill proposes a significant increase in the permanent annual level of energy research funding to SEK 1.3 billion annually from 2013 and SEK 1.4 billion per year from 2016 onwards.
The overall goal of energy research financed by the central government is to help meet Sweden’s energy and climate objectives.
Over the next four years, energy research will primarily focus on five priority areas: the shift to a fossil-fuel independent vehicle fleet, the design of a power system that can cope with increasing renewable electricity production, greater energy efficiency in buildings, increased use of bioenergy and energy efficiency in industry.
Photo: Ajit Solanki/Scanpix
In the Budget Bill for 2013, the Government presented an extension of the support for the installation of solar cells to 2016. SEK 210 million will be set aside for this purpose in 2013-2016. Solar electricity contributes to the transition to a green economy, but is not yet able to stand on its own feet. The Government’s support helps to create the conditions for developing and establishing promising technologies. Increased use of solar electricity is an important factor for sustainable development.
In addition to the SEK 60 million already announced for 2013, SEK 280 million will be invested by 2016. All in all, SEK 340 million will be set aside for innovative biogas by 2016. Increased production and use of biogas is important for sustainable development and a society independent of fossil energy. The support aims to promote technology development that can help to lower system costs, so that technology that cannot stand on its own feet today will be able to in the long run.
Near zero energy buildings
Few sectors offer so much scope for energy savings as the construction sector does. For this reason, the Government is investing SEK 120 million over 2014-2016 to develop the energy efficient buildings of the future These new funds are being invested in a programme that aims to develop the knowledge base needed to build the energy-efficient houses of the future. The initiative includes demonstration of new construction, reconstruction and renovation. The support mainly covers additional costs for increased skills development, uniform monitoring, evaluation and analysis. The proposed investment also applies to multi-dwelling buildings, public premises and the construction of new homes. The experience we gain from the programme will serve as the basis for the new energy standards that will apply to all new buildings as of 2021.