Will Sweden be 1st fossil-free welfare state?

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Sweden's Prime Minister Stefan Löfven in Washington, DC in March 2015. (Mandel Ngan / AFP/ Getting Images)
Sweden’s Prime Minister Stefan Löfven in Washington, DC in March 2015. (Mandel Ngan / AFP/ Getting Images)
Addressing the United Nation’s General Assembly on Saturday, Swedish Prime Minster Stefan Löfven said his nation would work toward becoming one of the first fossil-free welfare states in the world.

Löfven was speaking at the UN’s sustainable development summit that saw world leaders adopt new goals to end poverty, improve health and fight climate change within the next 15 years.

Löfven said Sweden would work hard to “break the link between development and fossil fuel dependence” and used his pulpit to encourage Swedish companies to develop “the climate smart innovations that the world is asking for.”

“Morally right, economically smart”

The premier also touched upon Sweden’s efforts to improve gender equality within society. He underscored how promoting gender equality would have real economic benefits for nations.

“The mission ahead of us, as the global community, is not only morally right it is also economically smart,” he said, “because equality and development are two sides of the same coin.”

He also pointed out how Sweden will work within a group of nine leaders from different regions to ensure the new UN goals are implemented. The group includes German Chancellor Angela Merkel, the presidents of Brazil, Colombia, Liberia, South Africa, Tanzania and Tunisia and the prime minister of East Timor.

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