Famous for Volvo, Ikea and Absolut Vodka, Sweden is now on a new pursuit to become the first completely oil-free economy in the world by 2020.
The oil crisis in the early 1970s forced Sweden to embark on a quest for alternative energy sources. Its phasing out of oil has proceeded smoothly; in 1970, oil accounted for 77% of Sweden’s energy, but by 2003 that figure fell to 32%.
International oil dependency is one of the world’s biggest problems and as Sahlin notes, a Sweden free of fossil fuels would give the country enormous advantages, “not least by reducing the impact from fluctuations in oil prices. The price of oil has tripled since 1996.” Sweden’s investments, actions and laws are no accident, and although Sweden’s goal of eliminating oil consumption is seen as ambitious by the rest of the world, their attention to the detrimental effects of this dependence is worth noting. As Nelson Mandela reminds us “it seems impossible until it is done.”
Via UtilityTree, Stephane Bilodeau, pdjmoo