Sweden has a large capacity for renewables. About half of Swedish electricity production comes from hydropower. Furthermore, biomass plays an important role in the Swedish energy system. The main production of biomass is obtained from forests. The total use of wood fuels were about 39TWh (8 percent) per year in 199541. The use of wood fuels by the DH sector has almost tripled over the last five years. The main form of the fuels is felling waste and forest by-products, processed fuels such as briquettes and pellets have also been increasingly used in recent years42.
Experimental use has been made of energy crops such as energy forests, straw, and energy grass since the beginnings of 1990's. Amongst the RE commonly used in Sweden, wood fuel has the biggest potential, but 17,000 ha planted with energy forests are expected to fall to about 15,000 hectares as land is converted to the production of more profitable crops. There was a relatively extensive commercial import of biomass fuels (at a low price) during the year, whose quantities are difficult to estimate but amount to 35-40 percent of the supply of biofuels for DHP.
A. INSTITUTIONAL ASPECTS
A.1. - POLICIES, STRATEGIES AND PROJECTS
The official Swedish energy policy began in 1991. It provides an energy supply based on a greater extent on RE and techniques with few pollutants and low net contribution of greenhouse gases. Sweden has implemented programmes in response to climate change since 1988.
A more comprehensive programme was adopted by the parliament in May 1993, when the Bill regarding "Strategies against climate change" was passed. The goal established by the Parliament is that carbon dioxide from fossil sources in the year 2000 shall have stabilise at the 1990 level and shall decline after that, in compliance with the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change43. The strategy to reach this goal is to support R&D and demonstration projects, together with the application of administrative and economic regulations. In Sweden, biomass is considered currently the best option available among the other renewable energy systems. The Parliament supports many long-range R&D programmes.
A.2. - THE ROLE OF TECHNICAL AGENCIES
Governmental Organisations involved:
· The Swedish National Energy Administration is Sweden's national authority on issues regarding the supply and use of energy. It implements energy policy, co-ordinate and rationalise work at Government level, maintain and develop contacts with organisations operating in the energy field and provide staff service to the Government. Its main task is to implement a programme aiming to establish an ecologically as well as economically sustainable energy system. It does so by supporting research on RE and technology procurement of energy-efficient products and by providing investment support for the development of RE. The Department for Structural and Market Analysis provides analyses of the linkages between energy, the environment, and economic growth.
· NUTEK - the Swedish National Board for Industrial and Technical Development is Sweden's central public authority for matters concerning the growth and renewal of industry and the long-term development of the energy system. It has the central role of implementing the Government's policy it promotes energy-technical R&D and supports the introduction of new energy supply technology and the development of energy-efficient products. It is NUTEK's concern that the Swedish supply of energy should be safe, efficient, and environmentally friendly.
· Farmers' Organisations have a research council funded by the State that finances R&D on SRC.
Non Governmental Organisations involved:
· SVEBIO - the Swedish Biomass Association is a group for biomass promotion. It has a significant role in providing technical expertise and policy advice to public authorities. It functions as an information exchange centre, and also organises several conferences, seminars. Likewise, it is also active in developing public awareness through a publication of a bulletin (6 issues per year) presenting information on policy issues.
· TPS Termiska Processer AB is a private research centre that carries out large-scale projects related to wood fuel in Europe and throughout the world. It focuses on clean and high efficiency methods for energy conversion.
The Swedish system of energy and environmental taxation distinguishes between taxes on industry and taxes on other uses. This distinction is important particularly on common legislation, restrictions, and regulations within the EC.
_ FINANCIAL REGULATIONS:
In 1996 free competition was introduced in the electricity market. Smaller generators are protected for a 5-year period by transitional provisions.
FINANCIAL INCENTIVES FOR THE PRODUCTION OF ENERGY CROPS:
Subsidies for "set-aside" land exist in Sweden. The Energy technology fund provides support for development and demonstration of clean energy technology. It amounts to 25-50% of project costs.
FINANCIAL INCENTIVES FOR THE CONVERSION OF ENERGY CROPS:
The government has granted investment subsidies for CHP installations.
FINANCIAL INCENTIVES FOR THE UTILISATION OF ENERGY FROM ENERGY CROPS:
General energy tax, carbon dioxide tax and sulphur tax are not levied on biofuels and waste. An increase in taxes on fossil fuels is expected which will make RE more attractive.
Energy carriers that contain at least 5% of hydrocarbons by weight and are sold or used for heating purposes are subject to both energy tax and carbon dioxide tax.
Fuels used for electricity purpose are exempted from these taxes.
Wood fuel standards do not exist. Standards for pellets are being developed.
Wood fired emission standards are identified. Particulate emissions range from 100 (in urban areas) to 350mg/Nm3 (in non- urban areas) for plant of 0.5-10MW. NOx emissions range from 50 to 100mg/MJ. CO emissions often are set according to German rules.
41 Parliamentary EC in Sweden "The restructuring and developing of the energy system", 1995
42 Swedish National Energy Administration "Energy in Sweden 1998"
43 Sweden's Second National Communication on Climate Change.