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Sweden's fossil free development pathway

Countries in the world need new pathways for development, away from fossil carbon into renewable and fossil free future.

Sweden of today is built on revenues from the steel and paper industry, but our development has not finished. Climate change is now questioning the old development pathways.

Sweden is in a good position, we have nearly managed to phase out fossil energy in the sectors of heating and electricity. Our carbon emission accounted for in the Kyoto protocol shows 5,5 ton per capita, less than China of today. A carbon tax has been instrumental to make this happen.

We have seen how phasing out fossil energy has improved air quality and health, and has per strengthened our economy.

So we are ready for the next step. We start the reforms that Sweden will be one of the world's first fossil-free nations.

There are two simple reasons why a government of a developed country want to race towards such a goal:

1. It is our responsibility, to protect the prosperty and life of coming generations.

2. It makes good economic sense, minimizing the cost of damage and fostering innovation and future export.

Sweden has the possibility to show that a fossil free development pathway is both possible and better.

But to do this in practice cooperation between state and non-state actors is a key factor. Therefore we launched, parallell to the Lima-Paris Action Agenda, an initiative together with Swedish companies like IKEA, Volvo Group, H&M and Ericsson and Sweden's major towns and cities. All actors contribute to reduced emissions, several Swedish towns and cities have decided to go completely fossil-free well before the middle of this century.

All actors in the society need to be mobilized in fossil free development.

I am encouraging other countries to accept Sweden's challenge to see who can go fossil-free first.

I hope that many will take up the challenge.

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