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Swedes have become 'older, heavier and greener'

The average Swede has become older, heavier and more environmentally minded, the statistics office said as it released its fascinating "Statistical Yearbook of Sweden".

Oscar and Maja most popular names in Sweden

The average Swede: She is now named Maria and is 42 years old. His name is Mikael and has become one year older with fresh memories of last year's 40th birthday celebration. The increase in age is completely in line with the trend: Life expectancy is predicted to increase for both sexes for many decades ahead. Another trend is that the body weight of the population has increased for more than three decades – for men and women in all age groups.

53 percent of all men are overweight while the corresponding figure for women is 37 percent. One explanation for our weight increase could be that 90 percent now have access to computers in the home. The increasing use of computers may have influenced one thing or another, perhaps even that we are more highly educated than ever – in 2009, 38 percent had post secondary education, compared to 23 percent in 1990. The most highly educated group in the population consists of women aged 25–34.


We are eating and drinking more and more
The average household spent SEK 2 900 a month on food, an increase of 2 percent compared to the year before. Within three decades the daily energy intake from food has increased by about 7 percent for the average Swede, amounting to 3 100 calories. During 2009 we also consumed more alcohol, above all wine and strong beer. Since 1990 this consumption has increased considerably: Strong beer by about 70 percent wine by about 80 percent. In 2009 we may have poured some alcohol in the form of ethanol into our cars.


Going green
At any rate, the number of environmentally friendly cars has increased significantly. From 2007 to 2009 the number of passenger cars in traffic running on "petrol/ethanol" rose from 398 to 48 087 cars1. These facts make the strong advances of windpower during the same period seem minuscule. The share of electricity production for windpower is still small, but is charging forward to the 2 percent level. At the same time the contribution of nuclear power to the production and distribution of electricity was the lowest in 25 years, decreasing by all of 18.4 percent.

It was a good year for recycling. Here we see peak notations in a number of categories such as types of metal packaging as well as newspaper recycling which has now reached a record level of 91 percent.


Alarming crime statistics
The number of crimes reported to the police, customs or a public prosecutor increased by 2 percent and reached a new record – more than 1.4 million crimes were reported. Never before have there been so many shop robberies, sexual crimes increased by 9 percent and home burglaries by 13 percent. Vandalism increased by 4 percent, corresponding to more than 25 percent of the total increase in the number of reported crimes. Crimes of assault have also increased by 47 percent during the last 10 year period. However, we find a ray of hope for theft crimes, which are now at a level 21 percent below the year 2000. The largest decreases are among the categories car theft and unspecified theft without burglary.

Last Updated (Thursday, 20 January 2011 10:04)

 

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