An ambitious climate, energy and environment policy

The EU must show leadership in the battle against climate change and implement the Paris Agreement. Important steps have already been taken and legislation, primarily in the area of environment, climate and energy, is being negotiated to transition to a more sustainable society.

Photo: Eija Huhtikorpi/Folio

Climate change is threatening our habitat. It causes natural disasters and forces people to flee. We are facing almost existential challenges as a result of the human impact on ecosystems and the spread of hazardous toxins. These are challenges that can only be solved through cross-border cooperation. The EU needs an ambitious and cohesive climate, energy and environment policy to achieve the agreed climate and environmental objectives, and for the EU to be a strong and proactive force globally.

Sweden will lead the way and the Government is therefore taking a leading role to speed up the transition to a bio-based and circular economy, with a higher percentage of renewable energy.

An ambitious climate and energy policy

The Paris Agreement represents progress for both the EU's and Sweden's efforts. But the challenges do not stop here. The agreement now has to be implemented to reach the climate goal of keeping the rise in temperature well below 2 degrees Celsius and striving to limit it to 1.5 degrees Celsius.

For the EU to reduce its emissions and implement the Paris Agreement, the EU acquis has to lead to a transition and stricter legislation in the environment, climate and energy area.

The Government will work to ensure that:

  • the EU promotes the implementation of the Paris Agreement and reduces its greenhouse gas emissions; there should be a strengthened system for emissions trading and regulated emissions levels for the non-trading sector, as well as the forest and land use sector;
  • EU legislation ensures that the targets for renewable energy and energy efficiency are achieved and creates good conditions for sustainable bioenergy, not least in the transport and heating sectors; and
  • the regulations in the areas of energy, environmental tax and state aid are reviewed to enable effective economic policy instruments to reduce emissions and meet the challenge of climate change.

An ambitious environment policy

To achieve a sustainable society, the Government is prioritising a toxin-free environment where hazardous chemicals are phased out or replaced by better alternatives, and where the Government protects biodiversity. We must change our view of how we consume and value our resources. Resource-efficiency, recycling, toxin-free material cycles and using waste as a resource are key factors for reducing environmental and climate impact. The circular and bio-based economy contributes to a sustainable society that meets the needs of coming generations and benefits business sector development and new jobs.

The Government will work to ensure that:

  • the initiatives in the Commission's action plan for a circular economy result in waste being used as a resource, products that are increasingly sustainable, high and equivalent requirements being set for recycled raw materials and non-renewable materials being replaced over time by renewable materials; making the transition to new production and consumption patterns will benefit consumers; and
  • that the negotiations on waste directives lead to particularly hazardous substances being phased out, high and equivalent requirements on recycled raw products and new raw products, toxin-free material cycles, markets for secondary materials, a prohibition on landfilling of recyclable waste, and the sustainable handling of biological waste.