From 2025, a new environmental zone will be set up within the heart of Stockholm, prohibiting petrol and diesel-fuelled cars. This will be achieved by instituting a new environmental, low-emission zone which will cover a 20 block area in the downtown district, including prominent shopping streets and busy office areas.
The primary objective of this new and drastic action is unsurprising; it aims to foster a cleaner, quieter, and healthier atmosphere in the Swedish capital, by prioritizing the well-being of both residents and visitors.
The planned environmental zone falls within the area formed by Kungsgatan, Birger Jarlsgatan, Hamngatan and Sveavägen, and the entrance to the Klaratunnel via Mäster Samuelsgatan is also part of the planned zone.
The plan, which was proposed by the Green Party in the city council, aims to establish Zone type 3, which is considered the strictest according to Swedish standards, meaning minimal exceptions for a return to the emissions produced by cars will be permitted. It is expected to make the capital a compelling example for other Swedish cities to follow.
In practical terms, only fully electric vehicles will be permitted to operate within the zone limits. However, certain exceptions will be granted to bigger plug-in hybrid vans, ambulances, police vehicles, and vehicles operated by individuals with documented disabilities.
Furthermore, Reuters reported that Green Party officials have indicated a plan to gradually expand the zone to encompass more of Stockholm.
As expected, this abrupt and drastic shift, along with the short timeline for implementation, is not met with unanimous approval regardless of attitudes towards ‘going green’. Private transportation companies, including taxi operators, assert that these changes are being rushed, citing insufficient availability of EV charging points in the city, making such a transition currently unfeasible.