Sweden's Environmental Objectives
It is in our country’s interest to hand over to the next generation a society in which our major environmental problems are solved. This "generation goal" serves as a broad objective of Sweden's environmental policy and is meant to be achieved by 2020.
All of society is responsible for acting accordingly to have this goal met. In addition, certain environmental agencies have been designated to follow up on actions and take Sweden’s objectives into account when making decisions that affect the environment.
At SwAM, we work actively to ensure that the objectives are achieved.
Sweden’s overarching generational goal is comprised of 16 environmental quality objectives which describe the quality of environment we wish to achieve through our efforts.
In addition, each objective is broken down into intermediate goals, so-called milestone targets that more concretely specify steps along the way and facilitate progress.
Our agency has a responsibility to work toward achieving the generation goal and the environment quality objectives. We have also been given the responsibility for the follow-up and assessment of three objectives:
- Zero Eutrophication
- Flourishing Lakes and Streams
- A Balanced Marine Environment, Flourishing Coastal Areas and Archipelagos
We work with relevant organizations and companies to realize these goals and, when necessary, we propose measures focused on these objectives.
SwAM is responsible for Zero Eutrophication, Flourishing Lakes and Streams, and A Balanced Marine Environment, Flourishing Coastal Areas and Archipelagos, as illustrated above by Tobias Flygar.
Follow-up and Assessment
We are also responsible for an annual follow-up of our assigned objectives. In our report, we make an assessment of existing actions and whether they are sufficient or need to be updated or replaced to reach the 2020 goal.
All assessments are submitted in an overall report to the Swedish government. Once every four years, the government receives an in-depth evaluation.
The latest in-depth evaluation (in Swedish) was submitted to the Swedish government in 2015.
The report contains a review of the environmental objectives' clarifications, an assessment of the possibilities of meeting the objectives, and a final account of previous national targets.
Toward an Integrated and Sustainable Water Policy
A review of Sweden's water policy is currently under way. SwAM has provided a basis for the work that a government advisory committee is now conducting toward developing a national water policy.
With new and more concrete goals, the hope is that the future management of our waters will be more coherent, more sustainable, and for the benefit and enjoyment of all.