< Show all posts

Swedish environmental zones explained

Sweden would like to be a pioneer in environmental protection. To achieve this, there are three different types of low emission zones. A total of eight cities have an environmental zone, and Stockholm even has two different ones.

Sweden has had a CO2 tax since 1991. The taxation has risen continuously over the years. In order not to jeopardise acceptance among the population, other taxes were reduced at the same time, such as property tax, capital tax and income tax. Sweden is also a leader in energy production, with 17 per cent wind energy and 45 per cent hydroelectric power.

Of course, there are also environmental zones in Sweden and have been since 1995, namely three classes, which the municipalities can decide to introduce themselves: The first zone applies only to buses and trucks heavier than 3.5 tonnes. So far it applies in Gothenburg, Malmö, Mölndal, Uppsala, Helsingborg, Lund, Stockholm and Umeå. The vehicles concerned must comply with Euronorm 6. Vehicles with a Euronorm better than 3 are allowed to enter for 8 years (plus the year of purchase) after initial registration.

Low emission zone class 2 applies to passenger cars, light buses and vans that do not run on hydrogen or electricity. All these vehicles must comply with at least Euronorm 5. From July 2022, Euronorm 5 will also be banned for diesel vehicles. So far, this environmental zone only exists in one street in Stockholm, namely Hornsgatan in the district of Södermalm.

The strictest environmental zone is class 3, where only electric, fuel cell and gas vehicles are allowed to drive, although the latter must comply with at least Euronorm 6. This class of low emission zone has not yet been introduced in a single city in Sweden. The introduction of this zone would make Swedish cities cleaner even faster and prepare people already for the year 2030, when the country wants to ban the sale of petrol and diesel vehicles altogether. A prerequisite for this, however, is an improvement in the infrastructure for vehicles with alternative drive systems. This is necessary so that the new cars, which are to replace the dirty internal combustion engines, can also be charged and refuelled.

You can find out more details about the Swedish environmental zones in the Green-Zones app!AA