Gotland, Sweden

Gotland, Sweden

  • Target: Climate-neutral energy supply by 2025
  • Status: In progress
  • RES: Wind power
  • Implementation: The Swedish Island of Gotland is committed to having a climate-neutral energy supply by 2025. The objective is to use 100% local, renewable resources to meet all of the energy demand for households and business on Gotland, except for industrial fuels. Gotland has implemented an array of innovative renewable energy projects.  This is largely due to it having the highest sunlight strength in Sweden, is one of the top wind locations in Europe, and has good access to biofuels. The municipality's sustainability initiative already began in the early 1990s, with the aim of creating a sustainable society by 2025. This would not only apply for the energy sector, but also for all resources, agriculture, and waste. Since then, the municipality has already cut its CO2 emissions from fossil fuels nearly in half.  A quarter to half of the entire island's annual electricity demand is met with wind power, and heating is produced with biofuels from local forests. In 2010, Gotland installed its first biogas station for fueling cars and buses, which today totals four stations. In 2017, the first public filling station for HVO was opened. There are also several loading stations for electric vehicles across the island. Wind power development has since grown but existing sea cables have been found to be limited in capacity. The Swedish Government's National Energy Agency is conducting a feasibility study on Gotland as a pilot case for a renewable energy system smart grid to address this challenge.
  • Population: 58,595 (2017)
  • Area: 3,183.7 km2 (1,229.2 sq mi)
  • Link: https://www.gotland.se/eco
Gotland, Sweden

Jämtland County, Sweden

Jämtland, Sweden

  • Target: 100% renewable energy
  • Status: In progress
  • RES: Hydropower, windpower, cogeneration and biofuels.
  • Implementation: Jämtland County is the third largest county in Sweden. The largest share of electricity production in Jämtland (93%) is generated from hydropower (11.2 TWh in 2013). The county has 83 hydropower plants. The remaining 5% of electricity generation is based on wind power (0.6 TWh in 2014) and 2% is based on bioenergy (0.2 TWh).

    Jämtland County first became motivated to switch from fossil fuel use during the 1973 oil crisis. At that time, oil made up more than 80% of the heating fuel mix. Today, no heating oil is used. The County’s Energy Agency has provided an educational program about the benefits of renewables, which has encouraged local citizens to make the switch.

    Due to its abundant forest resources, well-developed infrastructure in forests, expertise in logistics and district heating, Jämtland's bioenergy production is flourishing. There is strong political support and backing by the municipal and regional authorities. Östersund municipality, Jämtland's only city, has facilitated this development by setting ambitious climate change policies and targets and has shown proactive municipal leadership. There is also a high interest among other regional actors (local energy companies, forest owners associations, networks and knowledge institutions) in tapping the new opportunities for utilizing forest- and waste-based biomass in the bioeconomy. Bioenergy expansion is said to be attributed to the use of economic instruments such as a carbon dioxide tax, green electricity certificates, tax exemption for biofuels in transport, and direct investment support. Support for bioenergy started already in the 80s’ when investment grants were given to convert boilers and heat plants from oil to other fuels, including biofuels.

    Overall, stable EU and national regulatory frameworks has been fundamental to advancing the bio-based industries in Jämtland and Sweden in general.
  • Population: 127 376 (2015)
  • Area: 34,009 km²
  • Link: NordRegion Working Paper
Jämtland, Sweden
Östersund, Sweden

Linköping, Sweden

Linköping, Sweden

  • Target: 100% renewable energy sources for fuel, heating and electricity.
  • Status: In progress
  • RES: Biogas as biofuels, district heating and cooling systems.
  • Implementation: In the 1970s, Linköping was suffering from air pollution because of emissions from diesel-fuelled public buses. An alternative fuel was found in methane-rich biogas since it was clean-burning and cheaper than expensive oil imports. In 1995, the city in cooperation with Tekniska Verken, the municipal services provider and the Linking University decided to form an associated company with shared ownership, called Linköping Biogas AB (now Svensk Biogas). It began work with the farmers’ association, transit authorities, and other actors to implement a biogas project. The biogas would be made by turning waste products (wastewater, residues from local agricultural activities, meat processing industries and restaurants) into methane. The production would reduce the need for environmentally destructive landfills and waste incinerators, and reduce the volume of waste sent for incineration. The biogas project has contributed to the city’s economy, by increasing the competitiveness and productiveness of local farmers through the production of biogas and bio-fertilisers. By 2002, the entire city bus fleet and about 90% of the taxi fleet were bio-methane driven. In 2005, the world’s first biogas train became operational in Linköping. Since 2010 the City of Linking created its own car pool of around 25 vehicles that run on biogas. The cars are used by municipality employees during the daytime for work-related travel and are available for the general public in the evenings and at weekends. Besides biogas, the city is investing in co-generation for producing electricity, and providing district heating and district cooling from waste incineration.
  • Population: 104,232 (city), 158,841 (metro)(2010)
  • Area: 42.16 km2 (16.28 sq mi)
Linköping, Sweden

Malmö, Sweden

Malmö, Sweden

  • Target: 100 % RE by 2030 and climate neutral by 2020.
  • Status: In progress - In 2014, the city produced 30% of its energy needs from RE.
  • RES: Windpower, solar power, and district heating and cooling systems.
  • Implementation: In 2009, the city of Malmö launched the ‘Environmental Program’ in order to: (1) reach the goal of 100% RE, (2) improve the sustainability of the city, and (3) raise the quality of life of its citizens. Environmental goals were set: reduce energy consumption by at least 20% by 2020 and by a further 20% by 2030, and reduce GHG emissions by at least 40%. Furthermore, rail traffic, other electrically driven public transport and the network of cycle lanes will be improved and extended. The Program gives citizens the opportunity to participate in implementation, encourages private investment in RE, and reinforces co-operation with regional stakeholders. Today, he City runs all municipal buildings on 100% RE and has already been reducing greenhouse gas emissions with a focus on energy efficiency, reducing energy use, and investing in renewable energy. Over the past 20 years, the city’s disused brown fields and industrial spaces have been re-developed and revitalised with energy efficient buildings and attractive public spaces. The Western Harbour (Västra Hamnen) with housing estates operates on 100% locally produced RE. The houses are powered by a 2 MWh wind turbine that provides 99% of their electricity and 8 kWh of solar PV. Western Harbor also has an innovative district heating and cooling system. In the summer, cold water from the previous winter, which is being stored 90 meters underground in aquifers, is pumped up by wind-powered electricity and run through a heat pump for district cooling. Once the water is heated it is pumped back down into the aquifers where it is stored for heating buildings in the winter. Furthermore, Malmö is home to Sweden’s largest solar energy plant: Sege Park, featuring 1250 m² of photovoltaic panels.
  • Population: 312,012 (city), 728,293 (metro) (2017)
  • Area: 332.6 km2 (128.4 sq mi)(city), 2,522 km2 (974 sq mi)(metro)
  • Link: https://reneweconomy.com.au/malmo-sweden-leading-way-70597/
Malmö, Sweden

Skellefteå, Sweden

Skellefteå city, Sweden

  • Target: 100% renewable electricity by 2020, 100% renewable heating by 2040
  • Status: In progress
  • RES: Hydropower, wind farms, bioenergy production, cogeneration, and district heating grids.
  • Implementation: The city of Skellefteå on Sweden’s Northeast coast has long been known for its gold and copper mining industry. Today it is better known for its production of renewable energy, first developed in the area in the early 1900s when Skellefteå’s municipally-owned energy company, Skellefteå Kraft (SK), first constructed hydroelectric dams to power the region’s mining. Since then, SK has become one of the top five renewable electricity producers in Sweden. As a municipally owned company, social priorities precedes commercial pursuits. Like the Swedish national government, SK has established ambitious 100% RE goals.

    Currently, 82.2% of SK’s production consists of renewable energy and SK plans to meet the targets by diversifying their electrical and energy production methods and increasing RE generation capacity by installing new technologies and upgrading existing ones. The municipal company at present operates hydroelectric dams, wind turbine farms, bioenergy production facilities, cogeneration facilities and district heating grids. The city also aims to be net exporters of bio, wind and hydro power by 2020. Skellefteå’s emphasis on RE has prompted the creation of renewable energy laboratories and research institutes. The municipality's reputation is attracting advanced technology development, such as Tesla who selected SK as electrical provider for their super charger stations in Sweden.
  • Population: 32,775 city, 72,025 urban (2010)
  • Area: 21.74 km2 (8.39 sq mi)
  • Link: https://smartcitysweden.com/companies/795/skelleftea-kraft/
Skellefteå city, Sweden

Växjö, Sweden

Växjö, Sweden

  • Target: Fossil fuel free city - heating, electricity, cooling and fuels to stem from 100% renewable sources by 2030.
  • Status: In progress - Share of renewable energy at 60% in 2014.
  • RES: Biomass district heating system, and geothermal energy.
  • Implementation: The Swedish city of Växjö is located in the mid-southern county of Kronoberg in Sweden. The goal to become a fossil fuel free city was adopted in 1996. It began with a massive expansion of district heating systems and the use of forest biomass to feed these systems. This decreased its dependence on fossil fuels. The city also increased the use of geothermal energy. It launched its environmental program with the 100% target and outlined strategies, which included working with companies to support the shift to RES, working on energy efficiency,  and increasing the production of biogas, with requirements in public tenders for higher share of bio fuels in projects. Introducing renewables in the transport sector continues to be the greatest challenge.
  • Population: 66,275 (2017)
  • Area: 30.28 km2 (11.69 sq mi)
  • Link: https://www.theguardian.com/public-leaders-network/2015/jul/06/european-cities-clean-energy-governments-eu-climate-targets
Växjö, Sweden