Open Letter to the Transport Committee at Stockholm County Council

Give Djurgården all-electric public transport

Cooperation is one of the most important tools for solving the challenges we face. Working together towards common goals is a natural part of our work at Djurgården. However, we know that we also need to work with others to get more people to share our vision, including that of a fossil-free and car-free Djurgården.

That is why we drew up an open letter to the members of the Transport Committee in the Stockholm Region: Give Djurgården all-electric public transport. Royal Djurgården and Fossil-free Sweden were the main drivers. We put forward a demand to look into the possibility of electric ferries. , as well as how the ferry port at Slussen could be made into an important symbol of a sustainable city. The demand still remains today.

Open letter to the Transport Committee at Stockholm County Council: Give Djurgården all-electric public transport, 28/06/2018

Revamp the Djurgården Ferry and give Royal Djurgården all-electric public transport.
After the summer, there will be a direct tram line between Djurgården and Stockholm city centre. With this, Scandinavia’s #1 attraction, which draws 15 million visitors per year – more than the Great Wall of China and Disneyland Paris – will have a high-capacity, accessible and environmentally-friendly public transport link.

We want to give the Djurgården Ferry a boost, too, and in the long run give Djurgården all-electric public transport.
Improvements to the Djurgården ferries are starting to take shape; they now have better accessibility and more modern and environmentally-friendly features. With the new ferry port being built at Slussen, it is of the utmost importance that the ferry route is built with long-term sustainability in mind.

A leading example in sustainability

With its unique combination of culture and entertainment, parks and nature, Djurgården can be a leading example for a sustainable Stockholm and fossil-free Sweden. An important step, therefore, is to make public transport fossil-free and the ferries all-electric.

The Djurgården Ferry turned 120 years old last year and is probably Sweden’s most famous ferry route. It already takes close to three million passengers to and from Djurgården today. Therefore, all of the prerequisites for investing in electric ferries are in place; all we need now is a positive decision.

An important step towards achieving the UN’s Sustainable Development goals

If Sweden is to reach its goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions from domestic transport by 70% by 2030, we need to use our scarce resources as best we can. The battle for biofuels will increase once lorries, planes, boats etc. begin switching to new fuels. Therefore, it is important that we use electrical energy where possible. This is particularly important in areas and on routes where it can have a real impact.

On ferry routes that are shorter and have a set route, such as the Djurgården Ferry, it is easy to adjust the battery size and charging time. This would have a positive effect on the climate, but also in the local area, as it would reduce emissions and noise levels. Since 2014, electric ferries have been trialled on two routes: between Nybroplan and Kvarnholmen and between Solna Strand and Riddarholmen. The latter has reduced carbon dioxide emissions by 300 tonnes per year and cut operating costs by 40%.

Djurgården: Scandinavia’s #1 attraction

Therefore, we are asking the council to look into electric ferries for Djurgården, as well as how the ferry port at Slussen can become an important symbol for a sustainable city. Djurgården is Scandinavia’s #1 attraction, which draws 15 million visitors per year – more than the Great Wall of China and Disneyland Paris, for example. The Royal Djurgården Society works with Djurgården’s attractions to reach common goals and preserve and develop Djurgården’s unique features.

Fossil-free public transport is a prerequisite

Sustainability is at the heart of what we do and a key part of managing visitor numbers. At Djurgården, it is possible for the island’s rich history and modern, environmentally-friendly technological advances to coincide. We want to promote and showcase the ideas that will make Sweden one of the world’s first fossil-free countries, as we did at the Stockholm World Fairs that took place at Djurgården in 1897 and 1930.

Djurgården’s attractions are already in the process of reducing their use of fossil fuels; Rosendal’s Garden use Skansen’s horse manure in their biodynamic farming, for example. We welcomed the extension of the tramline from Djurgården to Stockholm’s central station, as well as the county council’s decision to look into the transition to electric buses.

An historic opportunity

We now have an historic opportunity to take another step towards a more sustainable Stockholm and Djurgården. We urge the county council to seize this unique opportunity to make Djurgården’s public transport all-electric. This will ensure that the world’s first National City Park is a leading example in sustainable transport.

John Brattmyr
Skansen CEO, Chairman for the Royal Djurgården Society

Camilla Zedendahl
Royal Djurgården Society CEO

Svante Axelsson
National coordinator for Fossil-free Sweden

Royal Djurgården is working with other organisations to bring electric public transport to Djurgården (17.17)

We are taking a leading role in reducing CO2 emissions from public transport (13.2)

By working with others, we can reduce the city’s environmental impact (11.6)

We are aiming to build a sustainable infrastructure (9.4)