The Importance of End-Use Technologies for Long-Term Energy Use in Sweden

Mats Bladh
Department of Thematic Studies—Technology and social change, Linköping University, Sweden

Ladda ner artikelhttp://dx.doi.org/10.3384/ecp11057984

Ingår i: World Renewable Energy Congress - Sweden; 8-13 May; 2011; Linköping; Sweden

Linköping Electronic Conference Proceedings 57:31, s. 984-991

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Publicerad: 2011-11-03

ISBN: 978-91-7393-070-3

ISSN: 1650-3686 (tryckt), 1650-3740 (online)


Energy consumption has stagnated in Sweden since the 1970s. It is not known how this was accomplished; but increasing efficiency in consumption has played an important role. In order to understand this a Change-of-stock approach is presented. Basically this approach says that stocks of energy converting artefacts on the consumption side comprise mature technologies with advantages of a path dependent character. These advantages create obstacles for radical technological changes and pushes in favour of incremental changes within dominating technologies. For the sake of testing the relevance of this approach five cases are highlighted. Data over stocks and replacement rates are estimated in three cases. Both factual and counterfactual estimations are presented. What is tested is the fruitfulness of the Change-of-stock approach as a tool for analysis of longterm changes in energy efficiency.

Results from the cases show considerable gains of efficiency in fuel consumption in private cars; and heating efficiency in multi-dwelling houses. Thus incremental changes are important; but are partially offset by changes in characteristics of the artefacts. Radical changes; as the factual change from air to rail; and a counterfactual double switch from gasoline to electric cars and from electric heating to district heating; and probable gains from the phase-out of incandescent lamps; show even bigger gains. Both incremental and radical changes are subject of counteracting tendencies; of a broader nature than that associated with rebound effects; such as more cars per inhabitant and fewer people in each dwelling.

The approach seem to promise a way to analyse energy efficiency that captures both promoting and counteracting factors; and at both the micro and macro level.


Stock; Replacement; Characteristic; Energy efficiency


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