“I’m becoming a little tired of the Moderates carrying out a lie campaign in this election,” Damberg told Swedish state broadcaster SR.
“They claim that we shut down nuclear power, which is not true, and also argue that we’re to blame here. I could just as well flip their reasoning and say that it’s down to the Moderate municipalities saying ‘no’ to offshore wind power in southern Sweden.”
He also pushed back against Moderate claims that legal frameworks prevent the branch from expanding and building more nuclear power plants.
“There’s nothing to stop the building of nuclear power plants today, but no one has done it so far,” he said.
With just four days left to the election, energy prices are a big issue for Sweden’s political parties, who are coming up with new suggestions for how to lower prices every day.
On some points, the blocs appear to be in agreement, but the Social Democrats and the Moderates couldn’t disagree more on what’s behind the high prices.
Damberg from the Social Democrats blames high prices on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and “Putin’s energy war”, whereas the Moderates’ finance spokesperson Elisabeth Svantesson holds a different view.
“This is all also caused by political decisions, you have to remember that,” she said in SVT’s morning programme Morgonstudion. “There’s a lot of talk about a war economy now, but that’s what Ukraine is experiencing.”
“Sweden is also affected by the war, but political decisions to shut down nuclear power plants have affected the price,” she added.
The then-chairman of Vattenfall, who was in charge of the company when the decision was made to close nuclear power stations, denied this version of events in an interview with newspaper Svenska Dagbladet, calling it a “commercial decision” which was not politically-driven.
Svantesson retaliated by arguing that that doesn’t mean that the government can be absolved of responsibility.
“It’s obviously the case that political decisions in the energy market affect investments,” she told SVT.
Damberg disagreed, saying that the decision to close nuclear power stations was made entirely by the branch itself.