Green recovery will lift Sweden out of dual crisis

Published

Global warming continues regardless of the COVID-19 pandemic. Climate change will remain the defining issue of our generation. The Government is therefore proposing investments of SEK 9.7 billion in green recovery initiatives in the Budget Bill for 2021. The Government’s proposals are based on an agreement between the government parties, the Centre Party and the Liberal Party.

All of Sweden has come together to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic and reduce the spread of infection. It is now crucial that a green transition forms the basis of the recovery after the crisis. Investments in industry’s climate transition, sustainable transport and biodiversity will help us emerge from the crisis. Investments in climate neutral and non-toxic circular solutions throughout the country will reduce carbon dioxide emissions, lay the foundation for new jobs and strengthen our competitiveness.

Industry’s transition will lead to new jobs

The Government proposes several major industrial initiatives in the Budget Bill for 2021 that can reduce emissions, create new jobs and strengthen competitiveness. Public sector investments in green transition will help us create jobs throughout Sweden and lay the foundation for industry’s transition.

By means of the green credit guarantees, the Government can promote major industrial investments that contribute to achieving the goals of the environmental objectives system and the climate policy framework. The Green Industry Leap will be developed and broadened to allow more investments in facilities that reduce industrial emissions and contribute to the transition to a fossil-free and circular society. Through shorter processing times for the expansion of electricity networks and complete tax exemption for more actors who produce their own electricity, more stakeholders will be included in the transition.

Increased biodiversity and other initiatives for Sweden’s natural environment

One million species are at risk of extinction. In Sweden, the number of species at risk of disappearing has increased by 11 per cent over the past five years. This crisis is impairing the conditions for human life on our planet and is reinforced by climate change.

The Government proposes an initiative targeting Sweden’s natural environment. This initiative will help stop species extinction and includes measures to protect and manage valuable natural habitats and reinforce efforts for clean seas and water. It includes funds for sustainable fisheries and a ban on bottom trawling in protected areas. The possibility of limited exceptions may be provided in the management plan.

Part of the Government’s initiative will also go to restoring wetlands. Emissions from drained peatlands that were previously wetlands account for 11 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalents – which is more than from private cars in Sweden. Restoring wetlands prevents the emission of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, so that nature does the climate work for us.

Sustainable transport reduces emissions

Domestic transport accounts for about one third of Sweden’s greenhouse gas emissions, and the pace at which emissions are reduced must be considerably increased until 2030. The Government proposes initiatives in the Budget Bill for 2021 so that it is easier for both private individuals and companies to reduce emissions.

The transition to a fossil-free vehicle fleet will be reinforced by means of changes to the bonus-malus system. The reduction obligation will be tightened so that more renewable fuels are mixed in with petrol and diesel, and so that long-term conditions are created for the production of Swedish biofuels. A major investment is being made in railways in the form of greater maintenance. To continue pushing for the transfer of freight transport from roads to rail, the Government proposes extending and further developing the environmental compensation. Green Cargo is currently facing a challenging financial situation, which is further aggravated by the ongoing pandemic. Green Cargo will receive a capital injection so that necessary investments can be made and to ensure the company’s long-term stability and profitability. This capital injection is given in light of the environmental compensation for rail freight transport simultaneously proposed to the Riksdag.

Energy efficiency in housing

The Government considers major investments are still needed both to achieve better energy performance and to address the renovation needs of the existing building stock. The Government will therefore provide SEK 900 million for 2021 to a new form of support for energy efficiency improvements and renovation of apartment buildings.

Initiatives for local green transition

The Government proposes initiatives to support local and regional efforts for a green transition. This includes municipal energy and climate advisory services, and measures to reduce the risk of landslides.

Improved climate projections and international climate action

The Government also proposes initiatives to support national and international environmental and climate action in the Budget Bill for 2021.

Press contact

Jakob Lundgren
Press Secretary to the Minister for Environment and Climate, and Deputy Prime Minister Isabella Lövin
Phone (switchboard) +46 8 405 10 00
Mobile +46 72 206 08 92
email to Jakob Lundgren
Hanna Björnfors
Press Secretary to the Minister for Financial Markets and Housing Per Bolund
Phone (switchboard) +46 8 405 10 00
Mobile +46 73 509 26 05
email to Hanna Björnfors

Budget Bill for 2021

On 21 September the Government submitted its proposal for the central government budget to the Riksdag.