Tag archives for lifestyle

Is city life really that green?

Easy cycling is good, but not the whole story. Photo: Maqroll (CC: by-nc-sa)

Stockholm and other Swedish cities are often being pointed out as green and low emission. According to official figures, the average person in Stockholm emits only 3,75 tons of carbon dioxide per person and year, which is quite a lot less than the average Swede at 5,6 tons.

But earlier this year a joint report from Stockholm Environment Institute and a green think tank called Cogito pointed out a problem with these figures. As so often with statistics, they only describe one part of reality.

These statistics do measure the emissions from all activities taking place within the area of Stockholm. But they don’t count the CO2 emissions that are made to manufacture and transport all the things that the Stockholmers’ total consumption is made up of.

What the report has done is to calculate the total emissions of four Swedish cities: Stockholm, Gothenburg, Malmö and Linköping.

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What do people over 55 think about climate change?

spring-walk

An active ageing population means people who both have the time and will to continue consuming and seeing the world. How does this affect the way over 55s look at the world? asks researchers. Photo: Helena Wahlman/imagebank.sweden.se.

They are know both as heavy polluters and those who could be the most vulnerable to a warmer climate. On the other hand, people who have lived on this earth more than 55 years, are seldom asked about their views or worries when it comes to these issues. It’s rather the coming generations we talk about.

Now a project run by Stockholm Environment Institute wants to change this by finding out what over 55s really think through an international survey.
– Some very old people say they don’t care, since they will anyway soon be gone: Others worry about what kind of world their grandchildren will grow up in, Gary Haq, who is leading the research team says in an interview with the newspaper Sydsvenskan.

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Swedes long for the countryside, but move to the city

The Borgström family moves to a milk farm for five weeks in a new Swedish reality show. Photo: Andreas Hillergren.

Recently one of Sweden’s main newspapers, Dagens Nyheter, went through the statistics and could show that Sweden is going through a major urbanization. Even if the country has grown with one million persons the last 30 years, many smaller rural districts are shrinking (article in Swedish, autotranslated into English here)

Just a few days later, I read an article in the same newspaper, pointing in an entirely different direction: When Swedes look at television, all we seem to do is longing to the countryside!
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Snow and ice? No problem for a winter cyclist!

My rescue this winter: Studded tyres. Photo: Sara Jeswani.

As a child, I used to cycle to school in all kinds of weather. Going by bus or being driven there by someone’s parents only happened on rare occasions, like after heavy snowfalls when the city of Alingsås [map] hadn’t managed to clear the tracks in the morning.
Living in Gothenburg [map] was the same, cycling up and down on snowy bike lanes (anyone who has cycled through this city knows that there are very few flat sections…). I remember cycling with my shoulders stuck at my ears at times, half panicking when the streets were covered by a shiny layer of ice. But somehow I managed.

Lately, though, things have changed.

Photo: Sara Jeswani.

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The new green role model: Sweden’s Grand Old Lady

A Green Grand Old Lady won’t leave her bike at home just because the weather is a bit grey. Photo: David Hall (CC: BY) 

The Swedish word tant stands for an elderly lady, typically baking cookies, wearing clothes from the 1950:s and solving crosswords. For a long time, the last thing a woman in her 50:s or 60:s wanted to become was a tant. But during the last few years, Sweden has seen a rising “tant trend” spreading among young women. Baking sourdough bread, crocheting and wearing second hand clothes is suddenly the new normal. Read more » >>