Sweden, a pioneer of renewable energy technology

Sweden is a leader when it comes to renewable energy technology. One recent advancement includes the world's first permanent electrifying road. The country also successfully piloted a hyperlocal energy development concept in residential communities.

Sweden has accelerated their renewable energy targets, with plans to reach 100% green generation by 2040 and net zero carbon emissions by 2045. Over 90% of the energy generated today comes from renewable sources, the majority derived from hydrogen and nuclear, and 24% coming from wind and solar. Sweden is one of the world’s leaders in wind. As of spring 2023, 3GW of installed capacity is generating ~38% of the EU’s total wind generation. The country also boasts a growing solar market. As of 2022, there was 3GW of installed solar, with Solar Power EU forecasts showing a remarkable solar potential of 30GW by 2030.

The country is a leader also in terms of green innovation and R&D. Sweden currently boasts 7 municipalities that are 98% powered by fossil-free energy. The cities have green energy initiatives to electrify transport, heating and construction needs. They have delivered vehicle fleets running on battery and biogas for their commuters, and have deployed waste trucks that can produce biofuel.     

Sweden has also successfully piloted a hyper local energy development concept in residential communities. 48 family apartments spread across 3 buildings have been given photovoltaic solar panels, thermal energy storage and heat pump systems. A micro energy grid connects it all and helps charge electric cars overnight. The result is a cluster of ‘prosumer’ buildings, producing rather than consuming enough power for 77% of residents’ needs. 

While Sweden is hitting targets and driving innovations, the country has not been able to avoid the impacts of a market that is growing faster than the structures around it. Demand for strategic land positions has driven land prices to an all-time high, outpacing even markets like Spain. Landowners are cashing in on the market wave, and in doing so making it challenging to find and secure land with conditions that make projects viable. The same can be said for the Swedish grid. Sweden’s electricity grid is aging, and it is not well equipped to handle the increasing use of renewable energy. The demand is creating constraints which is pushing time frame for grid connections. As the market struggles to balance itself, with the government deploying capital and processes to address the challenges, the pace of Sweden’s transformation hasn’t slowed. 

Together with our development partner Recap, our projects in Sweden could power up to 100,000 homes. Michael Sandberg, Director of JV management at Korkia:

“Sweden is taking considerable steps towards an increased electrification with advanced plans for green steel production, the world’s first electrified roads being built, and EV sales soon surpassing IC-vehicles. Increasing the electricity production of Sweden by installing a lot more PV in the coming years, will play a significant role in enabling this development.”

Learn more about the Swedish energy market and take a closer look at the topic of energy prosumers in our market report, Renewables Review. There we also take a closer look at other energy markets, as well rising trends such as agrivoltaics.