Building International Cooperation to Advance Science and Technology
June 30, 2006
Assistant Secretary Alexander Karsner has concluded a set of US-Sweden bilateral talks and a workshop on Biofuels in Stockholm, conveying the vision of President Bush to address America's "addiction to oil". Speaking in Swedish, Karsner added, "so must Sweden" (address an addiction to oil) and together, we can act more rapidly than alone.
Stockholm has been abuzz with lively discussion over the possibilities of displacing oil with biofuels, and during Karsner's visit, the Prime Minister announced Sweden's own plan to become energy independent (and free of oil imports) with a target date of 2020.
Both the United States and Sweden are setting the pace and leading the way to maximize integration of renewable biofuels into their energy economy, with specific plans, technology targets, and timetables, and it is inevitable that their cooperation will be mutually beneficial.
Participating in today's biofuels bilateral meeting were top officials from the Ministry of Sustainability, Ministry of Industry, Swedish Energy Center, non-profits, and leading private sector companies, including Volvo and Saab.
Continued cooperation and a growing working relationship is projected through existing platforms like the IEA and the newly signed Science and Technology Agreement allowing government agencies of both countries, like the Department of Energy, to collaborate on research.
A further round of dialogue on biofuels, and particularly cellulosic ethanol, will be hosted in Washington later this year.