Interview with Robert Andrén of the Swedish Energy Agency

We sat down with Robert Andrén, Director General of the Swedish Energy Agency (SEA) to discuss the topics of regulation, technology and grass-root movements to drive energy transition forward.

The Swedish Energy Agency is a Swedish government agency tasked with funding and supporting companies to carry our research & development as well as go to market and business development for the purposes of a renewable energy transition into a sustainable, fossil free society. Needless to say, that this objective is in 100% alignment with what we do here at lab10 collective and hence it was particularly interesting for us to hear first hand Robert’s take on regulation, exciting innovators they have recently funded and grass root movements such as Fridays for Future.

Robert has been quite explicit about the need to fund projects that can make an impact now, knowing that time is not on our side when it comes to combatting climate change. The companies he has pointed out were Climeon that turns industrial heat waste into clean energy and Surf Cleaner that has built a huge vacuum cleaner to collect garbage, plastics and oil from the seas surface. Clearly, endless opportunities lie in the energy transition, making it better for countries, the consumers, the climate and businesses too.

He made also very clear that governments need to improve when it comes to pooling resources and the implementation of incentive mechanisms to reward and facilitate the adoption of sustainable solutions. Grass-root movements such as Fridays for Future have forced politicians and business leaders to take a stance. Looking away is not tolerated any longer.

It was reassuring to see, that Robert clearly understands his responsibility as well as influence. We hope other governments follow suite with the Swedish Energy Agency and follow the invitation for joint efforts. What do you think governments should do to accelerate society’s transition to a sustainable economy? Let us know so we may put these forward as we continue to engage with policymakers.

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