The Swedish municipalities, which possess great autonomy for land use planning, are required to have Energy Plans (EPs) concerning the distribution and supply of energy. However, most municipalities no longer have operational control over these aspects of the energy system. Instead, many municipalities have initiated proactive, strategic energy and climate planning. Prior to a potential legislative revision, the current energy planning practice is examined with regards to the propagation of these different energy planning approaches and the influence of municipal energy planning on comprehensive planning. This study shows that 61% of Sweden’s 290 municipalities adopted an EP during 2004–2015. Most of these EPs had a broad scope, and it is shown that during the studied time frame the focus of the municipal energy planning gradually shifted towards mitigating climate change. The municipalities’ population size also has a significant effect on the propagation and currentness of energy planning. Furthermore, municipal energy and climate planning increases the potential for ensuring the consideration of energy and climate targets and strategies in comprehensive planning, which can facilitate a more sustainability-led municipal planning in line with the Swedish energy and climate objectives, and this relation is thus urged to be strengthened.
Energy Policy – Elsevier
Published: Feb 1, 2018
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