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The Swedish government has an important decision to make — whether to approve the sale of the vast lignite reserves of state-owned energy company Vattenfall, or ensure they stay in the ground. Forever.

The decision will define Sweden’s commitment to tackling climate change.

Join thousands of people across Europe demanding that Sweden’s prime minister Stefan Löfven stop the sale of Vattenfall’s coal.

In Paris, less the 6 months ago, Sweden’s politicians promised to protect us from the climate crisis by keeping global warming below 1.5 degrees celsius. Honouring those climate promises means keeping Sweden’s coal in the ground, forever, not selling it off to unscrupulous billionaires so they can burn it for quick profit!


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To: SWEDEN’s prime minister, Stefan Löfven

We call on you to keep Sweden’s climate promises and its coal reserves in the ground – forever.  Sweden must honour its responsibility to Vattenfall workers by stopping the sale to EPH and ensuring a just transition to sustainable jobs.

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people have called on the Prime Minister of Sweden to stop the sale of Vattenfall's coal!

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Vattenfall is 100% state-owned and the Swedish government can determine the direction of Vattenfall. Since Vattenfall is one of Europe’s largest energy companies, their efforts are significant for our climate and our planet. The most important thing would be to start phasing out the lignite that Vattenfall owns in Eastern Germany which today releases more carbon than all of Sweden. Instead the government are now debating whether to approve the sale of Vattenfall to EPH, an unscrupulous Czech company that will burn the coal for short-term profit, with a disastrous impact on the climate and for Vattenfall’s workers who need a clear plan for a transition to sustainable, long-term jobs.   We can and must make sure the lignite instead stays in the ground.
Lignite is the very dirtiest fuel you’ll find, and its combustion is far more polluting than both oil and gas. A coal power plant that is powered by lignite releases more than three times as much carbon dioxide as a gas fuelled plant. According to climate scientists 80% of all coal, oil and gas must be left in the ground if we are to stop climate disaster.
Scientists who have studied the total fossil fuel reserves globally have concluded that 89% of Europe’s coal must stay in the ground. If the Swedish government sells Vattenfall the new owners will simply keep digging up and burning the coal. The only responsible course of action is to heed the scientific warnings and keep the coal in the ground.
 This decision will define Sweden’s leadership and commitment to tackling climate change.If the government chooses to phase out Vattenfall’s lignite power plants, it would mean a larger improvement for the planet than if all Swedish citizens stop using oil, petrol and other fossil fuels entirely.It would dramatically decrease all of Europe’s climate impact, improve people’s health and leave room for investments in renewable energy. But if Sweden sells the coal, the buyers are very likely to continue with business as usual – resulting in zero climate benefit and further climate destruction.
Over the last few decades, Vattenfall has bought businesses that have been bad both for the climate and its finances. Instead of investing in the fuels of the past, and leaving someone else to clean up the mess they are causing, the real solution for Vattenfall now lies in phasing out their lignite operations. A 2030 coal phase out plan is needed to show how Vattenfall’s lignite operations can make a just transition away from coal, that takes into account both the needs of the planet and its workers.


In Numbers

100% of Vattenfall is owned by the Swedish state.
89% of Europe’s coal must stay in the ground if we are to stay below 2 degrees of global warming.
5 new lignite mines could be opened if Vattenfall sells its lignite.
1.2 billion tonnes of carbon emissions if Vattenfall’s lignite reserves are burned.
82% Swedes want their politicians and policy makers to do more to mitigate climate change.
3,500 people facing forced relocations if Vattenfall coal mine is expanded in Lusatia region