"The social costs of providing energy are varied and difficult to compare. Sweden's recent energy policy is notable for its broad-based initiatives to internalize those social costs of energy that are difficult to measure in strictly monetary terms. This article focuses on one such initiative- the Swedish law to phase out nuclear power by the year 2010-and its relationship to other national goals: The hydroelectric system is not to expand, carbon dioxide emissions are to remain at current levels or decline, and oil-import dependence is to be minimized. In addition to this challenge, between now and 2010 the Swedish economy is expected to maintain an average 1.9 percent real annual growth rate and to remain competitive industrially. Scenarios of future electricity demand and the accompanying supply mix illustrate the spectrum of costs"-"internal and external-from which Sweden can choose in implementing the phase-out plan and in determining whether one can identify paths that simultaneously reconcile Sweden's potentially conflicting policy goals. The results show that the direct economic costs of high-efficiency/low-externality scenarios are less than those of low-efficiency/high-externality scenarios. Traditional societal economics does not stand as a barrier to energy futures that are consistent with Sweden's desire to further reduce the external societal costs of energy. The results are also significant since they demonstrate that strategies to reduce global climate change need not rely on nuclear power." Copyright 1990 Western Economic Association International.
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