Behind such estimates, however, there are scientific models: computer simulations of real world processes. They are the tools to assess costs and benefits of a transformation of our energy system in line with climate change mitigation.
This week, the most relevant developers of such models assembled under the umbrella of the Stanford Energy Modeling Forum (EMF), for the first time at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK).
The new analyses they are preparing are about data and formula – but in the end also about euros and cents for industry and households.
“Together, we are going to have a real close look at the different technologies, from wind power to nuclear power,” says Elmar Kriegler of PIK. “We are examining their relevance for the world’s energy system – this study could be a huge step forward.” Kriegler is a member of the steering committee of the new EMF study and a lead author of the next assessment report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, IPCC. Important parts of this report will be based on these global scenarios of future greenhouse-gas emissions reduction.
“Policy-makers need a robust basis for decision-taking – so the different options have to be clearly labeled for them. When we run the different scenarios, these options get spelled out”, says Kriegler. “That’s what the EMF model comparison is aiming to do.” Up to now, the EMF focused on the analysis of energy and climate change mitigation scenarios for the US and the global level. Now, with support from PIK, the assessment of scenarios for Europe have become part of the program for the first time – stirring a comprehensive scientific debate that has been lacking up till now.
Potsdam researcher coordinates European comparison
The meeting was therefore a kick-off for a systematic comparison of energy models for Europe in which more than a dozen teams of scientists will project the future of energy supply. Taking part in this joint effort are the developers of the model that the EU-scenarios are based upon. Under the umbrella of the EMF, the comparison will be coordinated by Brigitte Knopf of PIK. “We will analyse the technical feasibility, the costs, but also the uncertainties of the implementation of climate protection targets,” says Knopf. “The idea is to identify several viable pathways. Model intercomparisons are important for understanding how robustly these pathways will achieve the targets - and which of them will be a hard road.”
A recent PIK study on the nuclear phase-out in Germany provided an important contribution to the debate on electricity costs. Now Europe, in addition to Germany, will be the focus of a new working group at PIK. The group was founded in parallel to the international meeting of model developers – up to now, the Potsdam-based researchers primarily studied global energy scenarios. “Europe is tremendously important for global mitigation of climate change,” says PIK’s chief economist Ottmar Edenhofer. “If we cannot achieve real progress in Europe, efforts for mitigation elsewhere will come under pressure.” As co-chair of the IPCC’s working group for climate change mitigation, he stressed how relevant the model intercomparison is for the next assessment report. “Only on the basis of scientific work like this is it possible to reasonably tackle the climate problem.”
A forum of scientists, but also oil corporations like Exxon
The Stanford Energy Modeling Forum seeks to improve understanding on the energy/environment problem by harnessing the collective capabilities of participating experts. It does so by explaining the strengths, limitations and caveats of alternative analytical approaches, and by identifying high priority directions for future research. Amongst the members there are scientific institutions like the Massachusetts Institute of Technology or the British Oxford University, organisations like the Electric Power Research Institute, and corporations like the oil company Exxon or Électricité de France.
Related Links- to the new PIK working group: http://www.pik-potsdam.de/research/sustainable-solutions/groups/eseg/eseg
- to the Stanfort Energy Modelling Forum: http://emf.stanford.edu/
For further information please contact the PIK press officePhone: +49 331 288 25 07
Mareike Schodder | PIK Potsdam
Agrophotovoltaics Goes Global: from Chile to Vietnam
20.06.2018 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Solare Energiesysteme ISE
Perovskite-silicon solar cell research collaboration hits 25.2% efficiency
15.06.2018 | Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin für Materialien und Energie GmbH
Scientists from the University of Freiburg and the University of Basel identified a master regulator for bone regeneration. Prasad Shastri, Professor of...
Moving into its fourth decade, AchemAsia is setting out for new horizons: The International Expo and Innovation Forum for Sustainable Chemical Production will take place from 21-23 May 2019 in Shanghai, China. With an updated event profile, the eleventh edition focusses on topics that are especially relevant for the Chinese process industry, putting a strong emphasis on sustainability and innovation.
Founded in 1989 as a spin-off of ACHEMA to cater to the needs of China’s then developing industry, AchemAsia has since grown into a platform where the latest...
The BMBF-funded OWICELLS project was successfully completed with a final presentation at the BMW plant in Munich. The presentation demonstrated a Li-Fi communication with a mobile robot, while the robot carried out usual production processes (welding, moving and testing parts) in a 5x5m² production cell. The robust, optical wireless transmission is based on spatial diversity; in other words, data is sent and received simultaneously by several LEDs and several photodiodes. The system can transmit data at more than 100 Mbit/s and five milliseconds latency.
Modern production technologies in the automobile industry must become more flexible in order to fulfil individual customer requirements.
An international team of scientists has discovered a new way to transfer image information through multimodal fibers with almost no distortion - even if the fiber is bent. The results of the study, to which scientist from the Leibniz-Institute of Photonic Technology Jena (Leibniz IPHT) contributed, were published on 6thJune in the highly-cited journal Physical Review Letters.
Endoscopes allow doctors to see into a patient’s body like through a keyhole. Typically, the images are transmitted via a bundle of several hundreds of optical...
Light detection and control lies at the heart of many modern device applications, such as smartphone cameras. Using graphene as a light-sensitive material for...
13.06.2018 | Event News
08.06.2018 | Event News
05.06.2018 | Event News
19.06.2018 | Physics and Astronomy
19.06.2018 | Life Sciences
19.06.2018 | Physics and Astronomy