The Kingdom of Sweden: A Long History of Sustainable Practices

A picture of a Swedish flag

Sweden has been one of the pioneering countries in the field of sustainability, green transition, and environmental conservation. Notably, in 1964 and 1967, Sweden passed the Nature Conservancy Act and the Environmental Protection Act, respectively, becoming the first country ever to pass such legislation. Additionally, in 1972, Sweden was the host of the United Nations Conference on the Human Environment, the first conference to raise the issue of environmental conservation. From then on, Sweden has taken major leaps in promoting policies, practices, and legislation aimed at substantially reducing greenhouse gas emissions and other pollutants. As of 2023, Sweden is a leading hub for environmental research and green technologies, spearheading decarbonization efforts through clean energy sources and becoming a model globally. This issue brief is the first in a series of publications from ISDP’s Korea Center focused on green transition and green technology practices and policies in Sweden and South Korea. It provides an overview of the historical direction and current development of Swedish policies vis-à-vis sustainable development and green technology.

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