Swedish Business Sectors Going Fossil Free to Increase Competitiveness

The Swedish business sectors are drawing up their own roadmaps to become fossil free. On Wednesday 20th of March the heating sector, the maritime industry, the aggregates industry and the digitalisation consultancy industry presented their roadmaps to the Government represented by the Minister for Environment and Climate, and Deputy Prime Minister Isabella Lövin, and the Minister for Enterprise Ibrahim Baylan.

* The heating sector has set the target to be fossil free by 2030, and by 2045 to become a carbon sink that will decrease the total amount of greenhouse gas emissions by using bio-energy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) in district heating.

* The maritime industry is aiming for fossil free domestic shipping by 2045 through the development of gas (LNG/LBG), battery, biodiesel (HVO) and methanol powered vessels that has already begun.

* The aggregates industry is working with electrification of the machinery and also circulation of material flows to halve the emissions by 2030 (compared to 2015) and becoming fossil free by 2045.

* The digitalisation consultancy industry´s roadmap shows how the sector can contribute to lower emissions from other sectors with transformative solutions.

In 2017, the Swedish Parliament adopted a climate policy framework that included the goal of making Sweden climate neutral by 2045. With the Roadmaps for fossil free competitiveness the Swedish business sectors show that they stand behind that goal and presents their own strategies to reach it.

In these roadmaps, the industries describe when and how they will be fossil free, what technological solutions need to be developed, what investments need to be made and what obstacles need to be removed. The roadmaps also contain the sectors’ own proposals regarding commitments for the sectors´ stakeholders and political solutions. In April 2018 the first nine roadmaps were presented to the Government and today four more were handed over.

The roadmaps are produced by the industries themselves within the framework of the governmental initiative Fossil Free Sweden. The initiative was launched to speed up the transition by encouraging cooperation between companies, municipalities, regions and the government.

- This is a shift of paradigm in climate policy where the business sectors are now taking lead, demanding prerequisites to become fossil free instead of opposing government regulations, says Svante Axelsson, national coordinator for Fossil Free Sweden.

Highlights from the roadmaps presented last year:

* The mining and minerals industry is carrying out an electrification and automation program that, together with a transition to biofuels, will make mining operations fossil free by 2035.

* The steel industry describes a unique initiative focusing on the development of a technology to reduce iron ore to iron using hydrogen, making fossil free steel possible by 2045.

* The aviation industry aims to make all domestic flights fossil free 2030 and all flights originating from Sweden fossil free 2045.

* The food retail sector’s goal is for all plastic packaging to be recyclable by 2022, and all plastic packages to be produced from renewable or recycled raw materials by 2030.

* The road haulage industry reduced its emissions between 2010 and 2016 by 25 per cent. They will reach the goal by switching fuel and they see the potential in route optimization and digitalization.

* The forest sector is aiming for fossil free industry operations 2030 and an increased production of biofuels based on forest raw material that will help other sectors becoming fossil free.

* The construction industry aims to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 50 per cent (cf. 2015) 2030, 75% reduction by 2040 and have net zero emissions by 2045

* The concrete industry aims to reach half the climate impact by 2023, to have climate-neutral concrete available on the market 2030 and all concrete climate neutral 2045.
* The cement industry is aiming for climate neutrality with the use of carbon capture and storage technology.

- Together, the roadmaps form a sort of ‘jigsaw puzzle’ of Sweden that tangibly shows how different parts of greenhouse gas emissions can be reduced while strengthening competitiveness, says Svante Axelsson.

Read more and download the summary report in English:

Peter Söderberg, kommunikationsansvarig Fossilfritt Sverige, +46 (0)70 310 57 97


Fossil Free Sweden was initiated by the Swedish government ahead of the COP21 climate change conference in Paris in 2015 to show how enterprises, cities, municipalities and organization contribute to climate efforts. Today it gathers over 400 actors and act as the link between the actors and the government in the efforts to remove obstacles and create conditions to speed up the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.