Sweden dominated Nordic low-carbon RD&D spending after the oil crises, with a focus on energy efficiency, solar, wind and bioenergy. Among other factors, the lack of a home market due to nuclear expansion prevented this support from fostering a strong export-orientated industrial foothold in these technologies until more recent years.

RD&D investments picked up in 2009, thanks to rapid increase in energy efficiency and bioenergy RD&D. For example a funding programme by  VINNOVA, miljöinnovationer, started that year. Miljöinnovationer continued until the year 2013.

Over the course of the period, and especially in the last decade, energy efficiency and biomass have emerged as the central focus areas of Swedish low-carbon RD&D support. Biofuel research has seen specific prioritisation, with a sharp increase in support in the last years. Sweden aims to have a transport sector independent of fossil fuels, and biofuels are expected to play a significant role in achieving this.

In addition to the more mature technology areas, Sweden slowly began to invest in ocean energy RD&D again in 2005 after over a decade’s break. In 2010-2011 the investments peaked, partly due to the establishment of the Ocean Energy Center (OEC) in 2011.

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Note: Figure shows million Euros with 2014 prices and exchange rates.

Data source: IEA