Yesterday the Swedish political party Christian Democrats made a public announcement that they were supporting the idea of higher gasoline prices as a way to combat climate change.
If you follow Swedish politics (like I am sure most of you here do, right?) you would know that this new decision from the Christian Democrats breaks their old ballot promise to cut (!) gas prices. Anders Wijkman (ChrDem) says this decision is based on the fact that they have become more aware of the climate threat.
This means that now all political parties in Sweden that are represented in the Riksdag believe that higher gasoline prices are necessary to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The Swedish transportation section is currently one of the biggest CO2 emitters and counts for about 20% of all CO2 emissions yearly in Sweden.
There havenâ€™t yet been any decisions or talks on how much the tax should, and needs to be raised. Sweden currently pays about $7 (about $2 per litre) for a US gallon of gas.
This is great news that will encourage more people to use the public transportation systems, walk or take the bike more often. But raising the gas prices are, and should not be the only way. Hopefully the politicians will also invest more in public transportation than what they are currently doing. In worst scenario we will have to wait for the next parliament election (due to the fact that the current Swedish right-wing government has fallen in approval ratings since day one in office) until we will see drastic actions from the political parties regarding climate change.
Key to Swedish Political Parties:
Centre Party (Cen)
Liberal Party (Lib)
Christian Democrats (ChrDem)
Social Democrats (SocDem)
Green Party (Green)
Left Party (Left)