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date: 20 February 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter proposes a multi-scalar and territorial reading of the transition toward renewable electricity, recognizing the importance of local authorities and local policies, closely linked to subjacent citizen mobilizations. The comparative analysis of German and Swedish electrical transitions allows the author to highlight the political dimensions of these two transition paths. The contrasted relationship to nuclear energy, the decentralized culture of Germany, and the weight of political ecology prove crucial to understanding the rhythms and modalities of transition toward renewable energies. The multi-scalar governance of the energy transition, also contrasted, has paradoxical effects. Less developed and more confrontational in Germany, space is opened for alternatives and citizen initiatives, creating a potential for the questioning and evolution of this transition. By contrast, the strong multi-scalar integration of Swedish policies might disserve the low carbon transition, since it strengthens the neoliberal alignment of energy transition policies.

Keywords: energy, renewable energy, electricity, Germany, Sweden, low carbon transition

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