Today in Sweden: A roundup of the latest news on Thursday

High-price protection for energy bills, radioactive steam, and 'humiliation' punishments for 9-year-olds: find out what's going on in Sweden with The Local's roundup.

Today in Sweden: A roundup of the latest news on Thursday
Barsebäck Power station. Photo: Uniper

Sweden to set aside 30 billion kronor to lower energy bills

The Swedish government wants to introduce ‘high-price protection’ to lower energy bills, with state-owned energy authority Svenska Kraftnät setting aside at least 30 billion kronor of energy profits to do so.

“Today we have a very important message,” Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson said in a press conference announcing the measures. “We want to introduce high-cost protection for current high energy prices.”

She blamed energy prices on Russian President Vladimir Putin and his war on Ukraine.

“We’re not going to let Putin hold Swedish households and businesses hostage,” she said.

Swedish vocab: som gisslan – as hostage

Left Party demands minister positions to support Andersson 

Sweden’s Left Party is demanding minister positions to support Andersson as Prime Minister after the election, with the party’s leader Nooshi Dadgostar saying it is an “absolute demand”.

The demand suggests there could be problems for  Andersson after the election, as the Centre Party’s leader Annie Lööf has ruled out sitting in the same government as the Left Party. 

Swedish vocab: absolut krav – absolute demand

Radioactive cloud released into Barsebäck power station reactor hall

Two weeks ago a cloud of radioactive steam was released into the reactor hall at Sweden’s Barsebäck nuclear power station, with six people exposed. 

The accident took place during the cleaning of the decommissioned power station, which began in 2016 and will be followed by a total dismantling of the plant by 2030. 

None of those exposed to radioactive Cobalt-60 received a higher dose than allowed under the agency’s rules. 

“All of them have been checked and the measurements show that the levels are not health-threatening,” said Maria Taranger, head of communications at Uniper, which is carrying out the cleanup.” 

Swedish vocab: hälsovådliga – health threatening 

Sweden Democrat calls for ‘humiliating’ punishments for 9-year-olds

The populist Sweden Democrat party has called for nine and ten year-olds to be given community service punishments which will have a “humiliating effect” to prevent them being drawn into crime. 

“This is a form of community service with what I call a “status-destroying” purpose,” the party’s justice spokesperson Tobias Andersson said. “The idea is that these children will receive a lower status in the criminal circles they move in.” 

The services might include picking up chewing gum and cigarette butts off the street, or cleaning graffiti. 

Swedish Vocab: förminskande – humiliating 

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Today in Sweden: A roundup of the latest news on Friday

Explosion in Solna, deadly shooting record broken and autumnal equinox. Here's Sweden's news on Friday.

Today in Sweden: A roundup of the latest news on Friday

Apartments evacuated after explosion in Solna

A major explosion occured in Huvudsta in Solna, just north of Stockholm, late on Thursday night. Residents of the affected apartment block have been evacuated.

No one has been arrested after the incident which is being investigated as grov allmänfarlig ödeläggelse (grave devastation endangering the public).

The explosion occured in or next to an apartment block, damaging the stairwell and some windows, police press spokesperson Daniel Wikdahl told newswire TT.

The blast was heard over large parts of Solna and in some areas of Stockholm. Rescue services were still on-site early on Friday morning, but residents were not yet able to access their apartments.

There are no known injuries and police are unsure as to whether the explosion was targeting a specific apartment or whether it is related to gang violence.

Swedish vocabulary: flerfamiljshus – apartment block (literally, “multiple family house”)

Autumnal equinox arrives: ‘Days the same length worldwide’

The autumnal equinox – the time between the summer and winter solstice where day and night are the same length worldwide – took place this morning at 03:03am.

From now on, the nights will be longer than days in Sweden.

“Darkness is drawing in and it might be time to get your cosy lighting out,” SVT’s meteorologist Marcus Sjöstedt told the public broadcaster.

The onset of autumn can also be seen in the weather, where Sjöstedt predicts more cloudy skies this weekend with some rain showers.

“Next week we can expect some more unstable weather with rain and clouds at times. High pressure is conspicuously absent, as is the warmth,” he said.

Despite the weather, Sjöstedt is still positive.

“It’s quite nice that the days are equally as long across the whole world. That still gives you a certain feeling of solidarity.”

Swedish vocabulary: höstdagjämningen – autumnal equinox. (Bonus vocabulary: mysbelysning – cosy lighting)

Sweden breaks yearly record for deadly shootings

A man in his twenties was shot to death in Kristianstad, Skåne, late on Thursday night.

He is the 48th person to be shot dead in Sweden this year, meaning that the previous record set in 2020 has been overtaken, despite it only being September.

The alarm was raised at 11pm om Thursday, where police were informed of a shooting in the north of the city.

“Then there were a number of calls concerning gunfire, but also about an injured person on Göingegatan,” Evelina Olsson, police press spokesperson in the southern police district, told TT during the night.

He was transferred to hospital in an ambulance but his life could not be saved.

“We know who he is now and his family has been notified,” duty officer Mikael Lind told TT. “We can’t say more than that he is in his twenties and that we currently have no suspects.”

Kristianstad has been affected by multiple shootings – as recently as this weekend, a man in his 30s was found with bullet injuries in the same area of the city.

Swedish vocabulary: skjutningar – shootings