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Electricity in Switzerland in 2023

Global Ranking: #7
97.6% #8 Low-carbon electricity
51.34 % #32 Electrification
935.42 watts #28 Generation / person
38.17 gCO2eq/kWh #6 Carbon Intensity

Switzerland has achieved an impressive milestone by securing almost 98% of its electricity from low-carbon sources. More than half of this clean electricity comes from hydropower, while almost a third is generated by nuclear energy. Solar power also plays a significant role, providing nearly 6% of the electricity. Fossil fuels account for a minimal fraction, about 2.4%, of the country’s electricity mix. Additionally, Switzerland is known for exporting a significant amount of its clean electricity to neighboring countries, contributing to reduced emissions across the region. Nonetheless, Switzerland faces the challenge of electrifying other sectors such as transport, heating, and industry, which will require a significant increase in electricity production.


To meet the increasing demand for clean electricity, Switzerland should consider expanding its existing nuclear capacity. Nuclear power has been a cornerstone of Switzerland’s low-carbon electricity generation, supplying a substantial amount of reliable and clean energy. Given the success of its current nuclear installations, doubling down on this technology would be a strategic move. This could be complemented by further investments in solar energy, given its growing contribution, as well as research into advanced and safe nuclear technologies. Scaling up these proven low-carbon sources will be crucial in ensuring that the electrification of other sectors does not compromise the country’s sustainability goals.


Looking back, Switzerland's journey to a predominantly low-carbon electricity grid has seen notable fluctuations. The mid-1980s witnessed significant nuclear capacity additions, with a remarkable increase of 4.1 TWh in 1985. The late 1990s and early 2000s were marked by substantial variations in hydropower generation; for instance, there were notable declines in 1995 and 1996 followed by a robust recovery, peaking with a 6.4 TWh boost in 1999. More recently, nuclear saw a substantial decline of 4.5 TWh in 2015, which is concerning given the continuous need for clean energy. However, the sector rebounded with gains like the 5.1 TWh increase in 2018. Hydropower similarly fluctuated, with significant highs and lows such as the 6.2 TWh increase in 2012 and the notable 8 TWh increase in 2023. These historical trends emphasize the need for stable and consistent expansion of low-carbon sources to meet future electricity demands sustainably.

Electricity Imports and Exports

Balance of Trade

Maximum Imports

Data Sources

For the years 1978 to 1989 the data sources are World Bank and IEA (imports/exports).
For the years 1990 to 2003 the data source is IEA.
For the years 2004 to 2023 the data source is Ember.
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