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Methanol as future fuel: efforts to develope alternative fuls in Sweden after the oil crisis
Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies. (USSTE)
2010 (English)In: History & Technology, ISSN 0734-1512, E-ISSN 1477-2620, Vol. 26, no 4, 335-357 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The 1973 Oil Crisis was a wake‐up call for Sweden. Sweden’s high reliance on foreign energy supply and the lack of domestic fossil energy sources hit private motoring hard. In the aftermath of the crisis, methanol was seen as a promising alternative fuel. This article analyzes how, who, and for what reasons methanol fuel was promoted in Sweden in the 1970s and early 1980s. Furthermore, the study places the efforts to establish methanol as fuel in an international framework and in the broader context of the Energy Program and the government’s objective to plan for a new energy future for Sweden. This article especially examines forecasting motor fuels and automobiles and how foresight was used in relation to the methanol campaign. The article argues that in the case of the Swedish methanol campaign the upcoming development in the energy sector was mostly described as smooth and calculable. Both the state and the industry planned for a post‐petroleum era, in which methanol fuel played a vital role. However, they were unwilling to take any decisive step until circumstances were right, but since circumstances never seemed appropriate, methanol as a fuel was always deferred to a distant future.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Abingdon: Routledge, 2010. Vol. 26, no 4, 335-357 p.
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Research subject
History Of Sciences and Ideas
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-43336DOI: 10.1080/07341512.2010.523175ISI: 000285144300004OAI: diva2:413085
Available from: 2011-04-27 Created: 2011-04-27 Last updated: 2015-09-29Bibliographically approved

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Mårald, Erland
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Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies
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