The City of Växjö is a university town in southern Sweden. It is also the administrative, cultural and economic centre of Kronoberg County. In the early 1970s, the city’s stakeholders joined forces to restore the city’s lakes. Växjö’s historical political and environmental commitment has made it an international model for inclusive climate transition.
As early as 1996, Växjö adopted a policy to phase out of fossil fuels: in 2019, this goal was finally reached. Today, 72% of the city’s energy supply is renewable and comes from biomass. Therefore, local CO2 emissions per capita have dropped by 70% between 1993 and 2020.
This places Växjö among the cities with the lowest carbon emissions in Europe. In addition, the Swedish city received the European Commission’s European Green Leaf Award in 2017. This prize awards cities under 100,000 inhabitants that show great results and ambitions to generate green growth.
To maintain this momentum, in 2022, Växjö’s municipal energy company is testing a new bio-energy carbon capture and storage (BECCS) system. As the remaining emissions are mainly coming from transportation, the municipal energy company also started working on a bio-jet made from wood residuals.
Växjö adopted a renewed Sustainability Programme in 2019. To draft it, over 1,400 citizens of all ages and backgrounds participated in debates about the future of their city. Following this document, Växjö could become climate neutral by 2030.
In 2020, Växjö also signed its first “Climate City Contract” with the Swedish innovation programme, Viable Cities, and several national authorities. It describes the strategies that Växjö will strictly follow to live without having a negative impact on climate, both on energy and consumption patterns.
Recently, the city has therefore adopted a transport plan for 2025 to foster the restriction of the use of motorised vehicles. The municipality is responsible for developing the safety, accessibility and sustainability of the mobility system. At the same time, a work with schools, associations and industry is done to anchor sustainable travel behaviour.
Sources: Municipality’s official website; Henrik Johansson, Environmental and project financial coordinator at the municipality of Växjö; Climate City Contract on the Viable cities’ website ; Smart City Sweden‘s website ; Energy Cities’ best practices; Wikipedia
City of Växjö is a member of Energy Cities since 2002
96 000 Inhabitants