[permaculture] Sweden Vows to Go Oil-Free in 15 Years

Jennifer Nazak jnazak at yahoo.com
Thu Jul 20 11:19:01 EDT 2006

The article doesn't say whether/how much petroleum
inputs go into producing the ethanol crop that is
mentioned as one component of Sweden's reduced oil
dependence, but still, this is impressive all-around.
Other governments (the US government, anyway) may be
too tainted by petroleum interests for such an
ambitious undertaking, but citizens can work toward
that goal ourselves. (We can make significant progress
down that road by simply reducing consumption. In
fact, we HAVE to reduce consumption in order to make a
renewable-powered society feasible, so that's a good
place to start.) We could have petroleum-free
households, petroleum-free neighborhoods,
petroleum-free businesses (what about gyms, for
example - I bet the energy from those "Spin" classes
could generate enough electricity to create a
self-sustaining facility. And hot water for the
showers could be provided by solar collectors ...)

jenny nazak
Santa Fe, NM, USA


"Sweden Vows to Go Oil-Free in 15 Years"
  Plans to be the first oil-free country in the world
by 2020 call
 for renewables -- including biofuels, wind, and wave
power -- to
 replace fossil fuels.  The country already committed
itself to 
 phasing out nuclear energy.
 Scientists, industry leaders, farmers, and others
will develop
 a detailed plan for presentation to Sweden's
parliament in October.
Sweden already gets 26 % of its energy from renewable
while the European Union average is just 6 %.
 "We want to be both mentally and technically prepared
for a
 world without oil," The Guardian quoted a government
official as
 saying.  "The plan is a response to climate change,
rising petroleum prices, and warnings by some experts
that the world may soon be running out of oil."
 Many Swedish homes are heated by wood-fired boilers,
geothermal energy, or waste heat.  Sweden is
encouraging its citizens to drive non-gas-powered
vehicles by offering exemptions from tolls and parking
fees.  Tax breaks now make ethanol-based fuel
one-third as expensive as ordinary gasoline.
     -- Rik Langendoen, Yes! A Journal of Positive
Futures, summer
 2006, 6

Jenny Nazak

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