Will the environmental quality objectives be achieved?


Assessment of prospects of achieving the objective.
Forecast for 2020.

Begränsad klimatpåverkan. Bild: Tobias Flygar. 1. Reduced Climate Impact*

"To avoid a harmful impact on climate, the global increase in temperature should be limited to no more than 2°C. Global greenhouse gas emissions must be halved by 2050 and must be close to zero by the end of the century. To meet this objective, a global climate treaty needs to be agreed.
* Target year 2050, as a first step.

Frisk luft. Bild: Tobias Flygar. 2. Clean Air

"Air quality is generally good, but further action is needed to meet this objective. Internationally, steps must be taken to reduce particulate and ground-level ozone concentrations. Nationally, additional measures to curb emissions of nitrogen oxides and of particles from studded tyres are called for.

Bara naturlig försurning. Bild: Tobias Flygar. 3. Natural Acidification Only

"Atmospheric deposition of sulphur has fallen sharply in recent decades. However, much more needs to be done internationally, above all to cut nitrogen oxide emissions from international shipping. National action is also required, in particular to reduce the acidifying effects of forestry.

Giftfri miljö. Bild: Tobias Flygar. 4. A Non-Toxic Environment

"Levels of some toxic pollutants are declining, but persistent substances remain a problem. Very large numbers of chemicals exist. Their hazardous properties, and the risks they pose to humans, are often poorly understood. Policy instruments are developing favourably, but further action needs to be taken.

Skyddande ozonskikt. Bild: Tobias Flygar. 5. A Protective Ozone Layer

Most of the indications are that depletion of the ozone layer has stopped, and that ozone thickness will begin to increase again before 2020. So far, international action to ban ozone-depleting substances and reduce emissions has been successful. These efforts must continue.

Säker strålmiljö. Bild: Tobias Flygar. 6. A Safe Radiation Environment

Radiological protection is judged to be generally acceptable at nuclear installations, but not entirely adequate in health care and industry. Owing to exposure to UV radiation, the incidence of skin cancer is still rising. To reverse this trend, people need to change their lifestyles and sun-exposure habits.

Ingen övergödning. Bild: Tobias Flygar. 7. Zero Eutrophication

"Eutrophication is a problem in many marine and fresh waters, with the worst conditions existing in the Baltic. Recovery times in the environment are long. To meet this objective, emissions both in countries around the Baltic, Skagerrak and Kattegat and from international shipping need to be reduced.

Levande sjöar och vattendrag. Bild: Tobias Flygar. 8. Flourishing Lakes and Streams

"Many fresh waters currently fall short of good ecological status. Physical disturbance and habitat fragmentation are problems throughout the country. Valuable lakes and watercourses need to be restored. To safeguard biodiversity, both natural and cultural environments must be protected.

Grundvatten av god kvalitet. Bild: Tobias Flygar. 9. Good-Quality Groundwater

"Contaminated groundwater occurs throughout Sweden, but mainly in agricultural and densely populated areas. A quarter of private wells supply water unfit for human consumption. Use of natural gravel has been curbed by stricter legislation. Meeting this objective will require measures in the areas of environmental supervision and water management.

Hav i balans samt levande kust och skärgård. Bild: Tobias Flygar. 10. A Balanced Marine Environment, Flourishing Coastal Areas and Archipelagos

"Eutrophication, toxic pollutants and intensive fisheries are still adversely affecting marine biodiversity and productivity. Wider protection of valuable areas is called for, along with other national measures. Many important transboundary initiatives are dependent on decisions outside Sweden.

Myllrande våtmarker. Bild: Tobias Flygar. 11. Thriving Wetlands

"Wetlands have been eliminated or damaged by drainage and other human activities, with adverse impacts on biodiversity, cultural heritage and ecosystem services. Valuable wetlands continue to suffer damage. Greater consideration needs to be shown, and more wetlands must be protected, restored and created.

Levande skogar. Bild: Tobias Flygar. 12. Sustainable Forests

"The status of several forest types is unstable, and many forest species are threatened. Long-term protection of forests is making headway, but greater environmental consideration is needed in felling. More needs to be known about how different measures and increased competition for forest land affect forest ecosystems.

Ett rikt odlingslandskap. Bild: Tobias Flygar. 13. A Varied Agricultural Landscape

"Natural and cultural values are threatened both by farmland becoming overgrown, owing to fewer grazing livestock, and by intensive agriculture. The area farmed is declining. A viable farming sector, which is dependent on world market prices and the EU’s Common Agricultural Policy, is crucial to meeting this objective.

Storslagen fjällmiljö. Bild: Tobias Flygar. 14. A Magnificent Mountain Landscape

"The mountain environment is sensitive, and also affected by current climate change. Wind power, mining and other operations should not be established in undisturbed mountain areas. Continued reindeer grazing is crucial to biodiversity. There are major gaps in our knowledge of mountain ecosystems and cultural environments.

God bebyggd miljö. Bild: Tobias Flygar. 15. A Good Built Environment

"As regards radon and energy-efficient homes, things are moving in the right direction. Vigorous action needs to be taken to tackle noise and poor indoor environments, and to improve physical planning and protect cultural heritage. Additional measures and new policy instruments are called for.

Ett rikt växt- och djurliv. Bild: Tobias Flygar. 16. A Rich Diversity of Plant and Animal Life

"Many species and habitats are at risk, and ecosystems in danger of being impoverished. Use of land and water is intensifying. Resources need to be used with greater consideration for the environment, and natural areas must be better protected and managed. Sweden must also seek to influence international action.

Key to symbols

Yes. The environmental quality objective will be achieved with policy instruments already decided on and with measures implemented before 2020.


Close. The environmental quality objective is close to being achieved. Plans now exist for policy instruments that will be decided on before 2020.


No. It is not possible to achieve the environmental quality objective by 2020 on the basis of policy instruments already decided on or planned.