Alliance agrees to keep nuclear

The centre-right Alliance has reached agreement on energy policy, saying it will not close additional reactors in Sweden nor will it allow the construction of other plants until 2010 at the earliest.

“Finally, after 30 years of disagreement we have come to an understanding regarding energy policy, said Maud Olofsson, leader of the Centre Party on Wednesday.

The most challenging topic on which to come to agreement was nuclear energy, which has divided the Alliance since the 1970s.

According to the agreement, the Alliance will not push for additional reactors to be closed during the next parliament, a deal that was reached between traditional nulcear opponents in the Centre Party and the pro-nuclear Liberals.

No additional operating permits would be provided for additional power plants, while no other plants would be shut down.

The Alliance will ask for increased energy production from the plants now operating.

Liberal Party leader Lars Leijonborg pointed out that the Alliance is agreeing to the proposed energy policies for the near future and the deal does not mean a long-term party policy change.

The four water power stations will remain under the agreement. The Alliance called for oil to no longer be used in heating homes.

The group said it will place climate policy high on its agenda, and would support increased use of energy efficient vehicles. The Alliance also said it would push cars and planes to use environmentally-friendly fuels such as ethanol, biogas and green diesel.

The Alliance also wants to stimulate the development of a green transport sector by including it in the European Union’s Emissions Trading Scheme.

The deal did not specify how much money would be invested on the measures.

The Alliance is made up of The Moderate Party, The Liberal Party, the Centre Party and the Christian Democrats. National elections are September 17.