Sustainable efforts

Stockholm is growing rapidly and enjoying a positive stage in its development, where many people are attracted to the city to realize their dreams of a good life. All new Stockholmers need housing, workplaces, commercial services and public services such as schools and pre-schools. The city needs to expand, develop and maintain all infrastructure like streets, power lines, and public transport. The high ambitions within the area of climate and the environment must be matched by efforts for a socially cohesive city.

The City adopted its first comprehensive environmental programme in 1976. Since then, a line of programmes has been put forward, with persistently high ambitions and new challenges. The environmental programme 2016-2019 is the ninth consecutive effort and clarifies the City’s direction. A large dose of innovative competence is required to meet the challenges and reach the City’s targets. Many of these challenges affect several different sectors, and the City needs to continuously seek new forms of cooperation and new ways of thinking.

The programme starts with today’s prevailing challenges to Stockholm having a living environment, both outdoor and indoor, that is sustainable. It focuses on the challenges that lie within the area of responsibility of the City of Stockholm, but also encompasses the objectives that demand action from actors outside the mandate of the City. Therefore, the environmental programme consists of both the direct influence the City has through its own operations in the form of manpower and property, and that which the City indirectly can influence, for instance residents’ emissions of greenhouse gases and the environmental interference caused by traffic.

Main goals

The environmental programme is centered around six comprehensive environmental targets which constitute a local specification of the 16 National environmental quality objectives that are most relevant for Stockholm.

  1. Sustainable energy use
  2. Environmentally friendly transport
  3. Sustainable land and water use
  4. Resource-efficient recycling
  5. A non-toxic Stockholm
  6. A healthy indoor environment


The City Executive Office, Strategic Urban Development Unit, Ragnar Östbergs Plan 1, 105 35 Stockholm, Sweden. Phone: +46 8 508 29 000

OECD cooperation

Stockholm is part of the OECD's Green Cities Programme for green growth. The Green Cities Programme offers selected cities to participate through case studies, which form the basis for an analytical OECD Flagship report. In addition to Stockholm the cities of Paris, Chicago and Kitakyushu (Japan) also participate in the programme.

The Green Cities Programme assesses how urban green growth and environmental policies can improve economic performance and environmental quality in cities. The aim is to increase the cities' contribution to national growth, quality of life and competitiveness.

A green economy leader

London School of Economic's report Stockholm - Green Economy Leader, produced in partnership with the City of Stockholm, shows that Stockholm took early action to build a green economy – unlike most cities, environmental policies have been important to Stockholm for over 40 years. At the same time, early infrastructure investment such as building the city’s metro system in the 1950s, and development of district heating following the 1970s oil shocks has helped to build today’s lower carbon economy.

Read more on Stockholm's sustainable efforts