While this Swedish initiative is definitely one to watch, it’s not quite as innovative and daring as it sounds:
Sweden is to take the biggest energy step of any advanced western economy by trying to wean itself off oil completely within 15 years – without building a new generation of nuclear power stations.
The intention, the Swedish government said yesterday, is to replace all fossil fuels with renewables before climate change destroys economies and growing oil scarcity leads to huge new price rises.
For starters, Sweden is the kind of country that has oodles of potential to develop green energy – lots of coastline, mountains, lakes, wind, that sort of thing. The article goes on to note that Sweden already takes 26% of its energy from green sources, as opposed to an EU average of 6%.
And lets not forget, Sweden already has plenty of nuclear power stations. Although they say they won’t build any new stations, I doubt they’ll be taking down the old ones just yet either.
Finally, the article interestingly neglects to mention whether any use will be made of gas. I’d put natural gas in the unrenewable category, but I wonder if it will slip into another category if the going gets tough.
Still, an initiative to be applauded, and one sure to be watched closely by every other developed country, including the United States, following George Bush’s recent statement that he plans to wean the world’s largest energy consumer off Middle Eastern oil over the next couple of decades.
Oh, and in case you were curious – Britain has pledged to produced the grand total of 10% of its electricity by 2012.