The transport industry is one of the major contributors to increased emissions that affect climate change in Sweden, as in many other developed nations. Therefore, Sweden has set up the 2030-Sekretariatet: a coalition of those parties who are willing to take action to make transport fossil-fuel independent by 2030.
The 2030 coalition consists of more than 40 partners, including businesses, municipalities, trade organizations, NGOs and academic institutions. Their aim is to ensure that the 2030 fossil fuel target is met through a combination of more efficient vehicles, a switch to alternative fuels and behavioral changes. It is hoped that these systematic measures being undertaken to deal with the transport emissions, will give Sweden global recognition. Sweden is becoming a frontrunner on this and is acting as a model for other nations tackling the issue. Thus Sweden is joining other small nations which have managed to position themselves as world leaders in well-defined sustainable sectors such as wind power in Denmark, electric vehicles in Norway and the use of bicycles in the Netherlands.
The target of achieving independence from fossil fuel requires an 80 per cent reduction in the use of fossil fuels in the transport sector between 2010 and 2030. It is recognized that the remaining 20% required to be fossil- fuel free is difficult to achieve with today’s available technologies and options. Nonetheless, an 80% reduction will translate roughly into about a 60% reduction in CO2 emissions from the transport sector, depending on the methods used to reach the target. The goals of the 2030-Sekretariatet have already been presented, inter alia, at the UNFCCC- COP meeting in Lima, with a follow- up session planned for COP 21 Paris (2015), at the World Bank and at the European Commission.
The target, and the work needed to achieve it, is divided between ‘Bilen, Bränslet & Beteendet’: (vehicles, fuels and behaviour). These three aspects can make approximately equal contributions to emission reduction in the transport sector. The groups are supported by a secretariat which focuses on four aspects:
Outreach. The 2030 Sekretariatet is currently the most visible actor in the Swedish media when it comes to climate issues. Its newsletter, with 35000 current subscriptions, reaches specific target groups, and it has a substantial outreach capacity on the issue of fossil- fuel independent transport. The newsletter and media presence also allow the Sekretariatet to inform the general public about the target of independence from fossil fuels.
The target was originally proposed by the former Swedish government in 2009. It then was the focus of a national commission, which presented its work in late 2014. The current Swedish government has retained the ambitious target.
The approximately 40 organizations that are partners in the 2030 Sekretariatet (see www.2030-sekretariatet.se/partners) implement the work required to meet the target. Recently started, the work will finish in 2030. The main challenges in implementation work are threefold:
Changing public conceptions about transport from that of a car-based society to that of social mobility. Sweden, as many other European countries, is firmly car- based in terms of media interest, and of economic incentives such as employee benefit schemes. It has thus been important to switch public focus from cars to mobility, while at the same time not estranging the automotive sector, which must be onside as part of the target achievement effort.
The main benefits of reaching the 2030 target are:
The target is in itself a scale-up process, which is clearly demonstrated by the indicators for its success (see www.2030-sekretariatet.se/indikatorer); in order to achieve a fossil- fuel independent transport sector, most of the leading actions and much of what the “coalition of the willing” is already doing needs to be scaled up. Among the most relevant and urgent next steps are:
Multi-stakeholder partnerships such as the 2030-Sekretariatet, with its partners from 36 municipalities, major vehicle manufacturers such as Nissan, Hyundai and Scania, energy companies such as Vattenfall and E.On, fuel producers such as Preem and St1, trade organizations and NGOs such as the Swedish Association of Green Motorists, are key to reaching the fossil-fuel free target in a timely and cost-effective way.
Supporting, mother organization: www.fores.se
Sweden, Mitigation, Adaptation, Freight, Passenger, Technology, Policy, Finance, Awareness, Partnerships
Fores – Forum for reforms, entrepreneurship & sustainability
Fores CEO Mattias Goldmann, Mattias.firstname.lastname@example.org, +46-70 309 00 45 2030 project leader Jakob Lagercrantz, email@example.com, +46-708 173 808
This initiative brings all Sweden’s political parties together to ensure Sweden’s climate efforts are globally relevant and to show others that it is possible to make transport fossil- fuel independent. On www.2030-sekretariatet.se, leading parliamentarians from seven of the eight Swedish political parties represented, praise the 2030-Sekretariatet and the initiative.
Quotes can also be obtained from all more than 40 organizations involved, see www.2030-sekretariatet.se/partners/