After work: “The perpetual Swedish energy transition: 500 years of enthusiasm, success and disappointment”
All KTH researchers are welcome to an after work arranged by the KTH Energy Platform. Per Högselius, Professor of History of Technology, is invited to talk about “The perpetual Swedish energy transition: 500 years of enthusiasm, success and disappointment”.
Time: Fri 2020-03-06 16.00
Location: Nymble/StudentKårPub - Room Gamble
Participating: Professor Per Högselius is invited by KTH Energy Platform
What can we learn from experiences of the past 500 years?
Sweden needs to quickly phase out all fossil fuels and replace them with renewable energy sources. This challenge is at the heart of the Swedish energy transition in the twenty-first century. Similar energy challenges have attracted the attention of energy system builders in the past.
Already in the sixteenth century Sweden faced the threat of fuelwood scarcity, giving rise to intense debate and a range of measures to cope with that crisis. From the late nineteenth century overdependence on British coal was identified as another existential problem that had to be dealt with through transition to other energy sources, whereby Sweden’s “white coal” – hydropower – emerged as the main solution. After World War II, Sweden took on the challenge to develop nuclear energy – and then to phase it out, as public fears of the atom mounted. The transition away from petroleum, for its part, has an almost century-long history that comprises both successes and failures – from failed Interwar-era attempts to substitute Swedish biofuels for imported oil to successful post-1973 efforts to phase-out oil burning in the heating sector.
What can we learn from these mixed experiences of the past 500 years? Join the discussion!