How Did Sweden Become the Most Sustainable Country in the World?

| July 11, 2019

The Nordic countries have long been conscious of their environment and those lucky enough to visit this part of the world cannot fail to be aware of how clean everything seems to be. People from Sweden, Norway, and Denmark take immense pride keeping their countries clean and want their children to inherit a world that is free from pollution. Sweden in particular has been setting benchmark programs to ensure the protection of the environment and at the core of these programs is sustainability. In fact, in 2015 there was a study called Country Sustainability Ranking, in which Sweden ranked on the top of fifty nine other countries. There are many reasons why Sweden achieved this ranking and the most important are listed below.

Sustainable Living

Sustainable Living
Sustainable Living

The Swedish government does not initiate environmental programs without long consultation with its people. It engages the Swedish nation how to best act as one to solve issues. This may be how to dispose of garbage responsibly to buying Eco-friendly goods in shops. One fashion idea became hugely popular and that was to bring vintage clothing back as a trendy alternative to making new clothes. Beverage containers are another passion that Swedes have taken under their belt, and nearly ninety percent of all PET bottles and aluminum cans are recycled.   

The Roadmap to Success

The Roadmap to Success
The Roadmap to Success

One thing that you will notice about Swedish people is that they are a deliberate nation. Things are never done on a whim and everything is meticulously planned in advance. That is why their success in becoming sustainable has come in a relatively short space of time. The country has issued a document called Roadmap 2050, in which they outline their plans for the future including becoming the first nation in the world that will be fossil-fuel free. This involves reducing greenhouse gases and increasing solar and wind energy. This will all be financed by increased taxes on diesel and petrol, and the sale of coal mines.

Carbon Tax

Swedish authorities with the agreement of their citizens introduced a carbon tax. This tax is one of the first of its kind in the world and penalizes the use of carbon fuels. The tax revenue that was gained contributed to two and a half percent of the nation’s Gross Domestic Product.

Human-heated Buildings

A great concept for cutting down energy usage is by the innovations in human-heated buildings. A number of communities are now set up to have energy-efficient passive housing. The way these building work is by harnessing power from the heat of the residents living in the houses. Although these houses are more expensive to build than traditional buildings, the payoff is considerable over the long term. Using smart-building technologies is a real alternative not to just improve the energy usage in a home but also to automate it to an extent that human failure is taken out of the equation. Sensors and relays are much more reliable than human memory. Sweden is showing the world that sustainability is a real possibility, and that there is no reason why other nations cannot follow. 

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