2020-04-21 14:08Blog post

The unrewarding deed of cleaning the Swedish stables (a tale on Electricity certificate politics)

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In Greek mythology, there is a story about how Heracles cleaned the Augean stables. The stables in which King Augeas kept 3000 oxen, had not been cleaned for 30 years.

According to the story, King Augeas promised to give Heracles a tenth of his cattle if he could clean out the stables in one day. Our clever hero opened a large hole in one side of the stable and another on the other side. The cleaning of the stables was then accomplished in one day by Heracles, who diverted the river Alpheus through the openings.

When Augeas learned about the trick, he would not pay Heracles his reward. Not only that, but he also denied that he had even promised to pay compensation. Augeas said that if Heracles didn't like it, he could take the matter to a judge to decide. Heracles did that.

The judge took his seat. Heracles called the son of Augeas to testify. The boy swore that his father had agreed to reward Heracles. The judge ruled that Heracles would have to be paid. In a rage, Augeas ordered both his son and Heracles to leave his kingdom at once. So, the boy went to the north country to live with his aunts, and Heracles headed back to Mycenae.

Some thousand years later, the Kingdom of Sweden needed to clean out their stable of dirty power production and build a lot of renewables. The kingdom promised a gang of heroic risk-takers to pay them a fair amount if they could solve the task before 2030. The risk-takers convinced their elders to give up their pensions, and with this money, and some very innovative technology, they finished the deed ten years ahead of time. However, the rulers did not appreciate this heroic act. They said it wasn't meant to go so fast and refused to pay the risk-takers. They even denied it was promised in the first place.

Very disappointed and disillusioned, some risk-takers decided to leave Sweden and go north to live with their aunts in Finland. Some went to Mycenae to invest in solar power.

And the judge sat there wondering why no one asked him of his opinion.

Fredrik Bodecker

Bodecker Partners AB

+46 732 55 87 27


About Bodecker Partners AB

Bodecker Partners’ expertise within Swedish electricity certificates and carbon emission rights, as well as the Nordic power market, is first-class. We offer independent advisory services to power producers and renewable energy investors in addition to tailored portfolio management services for electricity certificates and carbon emission rights.


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