Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Berlin can be climate-neutral until 2050: Feasibility Study


Berlin can reduce its CO2 emissions from presently about 21 million tons to 4.4 million tons in 2050 – despite economic growth and population increase. This would mean a reduction of about 85 percent compared to the basis year 1990 and complies with the ambition to make Berlin a climate-neutral city. As a positive side-effect, there could be a regional economic effect of up to 138 million euro from the shift in the energy supply from fossil to mainly renewable energy sources.

On behalf of the Berlin Senate Department for Urban Development and the Environment, a consortium led by the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) analyzed scenarios and developed recommendations how to achieve climate-neutrality.

The study will be presented to the public today in the Berlin town-hall by Michael Müller, Senator for Urban Development and Environment, and Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, Director of PIK.

When in 2011 the Berlin governing coalition decided to make Berlin a climate-neutral city until 2050, a report was needed to analyze the feasibility of this political goal and map out possible pathways to achieve it. A team of eight research and advising institutes led by PIK now made strategic suggestions after conducting a comprehensive analysis and scenario computing.

Partners of PIK are the Institute for Ecological Economy Research (IÖW), the energy consulting office BLS Energieplan, the Berlin office for urban development UmbauStadt, the Innovation Centre for Mobility and Societal Change (InnoZ), the Potsdam office Aerial Image, Environment and Planning LUP, the landscape architect office bgmr and the lawyers office HFK advocates. 

The main results of the study are presented today in a public event in the Berlin town-hall by Dr. Fritz Reusswig (PIK, project management) and Prof. Dr. Bernd Hirschl (IÖW, deputy project management).

If we want to avoid dangerous climate change, we have to act quickly and determined. .

The Berlin Senator for Urban Development and Environment, Michael Müller, highlights the important role of the feasibility study for Berlin’s future energy and climate politics. “The debates on energy and climate politics have intensified over the last few months – let me just mention the public discussion on the creation of a municipal utility and the re-municipalization of the energy networks. Both are important bases for a climate neutral Berlin as well.” The feasibility study shows that it is possible to achieve this goal, and describes possible pathways for the development of the sectors of the city relevant for emissions based on different scenarios.

The most important sphere of activity is the buildings sector. In the future, heating would have to be generated more from natural gas and biomass than from coal or oil. An increase of the regenerative part in natural gas (i.e. by surplus electricity) therefore plays a major role.

In the power sector, solar energy will be a key technology. With an improvement in energy efficiency, Berlin would even be able to generate more electricity than it needs. Until 2050, Berlin could thus be a net exporter of mostly regenerative electricity. Lignite from Brandenburg would not be needed anymore, but regional wind energy in the winter. The second most important sector is transport. Different transport vehicles and systems have to be cross-linked better. This also includes an increase of electric vehicles to achieve the climate target.

“The transformation of the energy system would mean investments that could strengthen the Berlin economy considerably,” says Bernd Hirschl from IÖW. The study also numbers the remarkable local effects for value creation and employment by a shift to climate neutrality of the Berlin energy industry. Depending on the scenario, until 2050, regional economic effects of 67 to 138 million euro a year could be generated.

Senator Michael Müller emphasizes that the study picks up on the inter-relations of ecologic, economic and social aspects. Michael Müller: “I really appreciate that the consortium led by PIK dealt sensitively with the affordability of important measures – especially in regard to energy related modernization and renovation and the development of rent progression in our city.”

Given the long-term character of the goal to become climate neutral, Senator Müller also welcomes suggestions for flagship projects and measures, which can be initiated today. “This supports our efforts to get under way with new measures even before the integrated energy and climate concept is at hand, while the development of the concept will start this year.”

The feasibility study will be available here (in German):

For further information please contact:
PIK press office
Phone: +49 331 288 25 07
Twitter: @PIK_Climate

Mareike Schodder | PIK News
Further information:

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht New Formula for Life-Satisfaction
01.10.2015 | Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn

nachricht Carbon storage in soils: Climate vs. Geology
14.09.2015 | Universität Augsburg

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Physicists shrink particle accelerator

Prototype demonstrates feasibility of building terahertz accelerators

An interdisciplinary team of researchers has built the first prototype of a miniature particle accelerator that uses terahertz radiation instead of radio...

Im Focus: Simple detection of magnetic skyrmions

New physical effect: researchers discover a change of electrical resistance in magnetic whirls

At present, tiny magnetic whirls – so called skyrmions – are discussed as promising candidates for bits in future robust and compact data storage devices. At...

Im Focus: High-speed march through a layer of graphene

In cooperation with the Center for Nano-Optics of Georgia State University in Atlanta (USA), scientists of the Laboratory for Attosecond Physics of the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics and the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität have made simulations of the processes that happen when a layer of carbon atoms is irradiated with strong laser light.

Electrons hit by strong laser pulses change their location on ultrashort timescales, i.e. within a couple of attoseconds (1 as = 10 to the minus 18 sec). In...

Im Focus: Battery Production: Laser Light instead of Oven-Drying and Vacuum Technology

At the exhibition BATTERY + STORAGE as part of WORLD OF ENERGY SOLUTIONS 2015 in Stuttgart, the Fraunhofer Institutes for Laser Technology ILT and for Ceramic Technologies and Systems IKTS will be showing how laser technology can be used to manufacture batteries both cost- and energy-efficiently.

In the truest sense, it’s all about watts at the Dresden-based Fraunhofer Institute for Ceramic Technologies and Systems IKTS and the Aachen-based Fraunhofer...

Im Focus: New Sinumerik features improve productivity and precision

EMO 2015, Hall 3, Booth E06/F03

  • Drive optimization called automatically by the part program boosts productivity
  • Automatically switching the dynamic values to rapid traverse and interpolation...
All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

EHFG 2015: Securing healthcare and sustainably strengthening healthcare systems

01.10.2015 | Event News

Conference in Brussels: Tracking and Tracing the Smallest Marine Life Forms

30.09.2015 | Event News

World Alzheimer`s Day – Professor Willnow: Clearer Insights into the Development of the Disease

17.09.2015 | Event News

Latest News

Graphene teams up with two-dimensional crystals for faster data communications

06.10.2015 | Information Technology

Laser-wielding physicists seize control of atoms' behavior

06.10.2015 | Physics and Astronomy

Flipping molecular attachments amps up activity of CO2 catalyst

06.10.2015 | Life Sciences

More VideoLinks >>>