ENCI Scenario Process > General Elements: Emission Target in 2050, Global Vision

 General Elements of a Scenario Development: - Definition of the Emission Target in 2050,
- Global Vision as Framework

Definition of the Emission Target in 2050

One of the first discussions on creation of scenarios in the ENCI-LowCarb project was on the definition of the emission target for 2050.

The French project team aimed at reaching a 75% reduction (”Factor Four”) of CO2 emissions for the period 1990 – 2050, which is consistent with the official national long-term climate target. The German team used a target of 85% reduction of CO2 emissions from energy 1990-2050 based on the German (and EU) objective of 80-95% reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and the assumption that energy – related emissions should be reduced some more than 80% to reach a national reduction of all greenhouse gases of at least 80%.

This discussion was largely formatted by the different nature of the modelling tools: The German model REMIND-D worked with predefined constraint emission budgets. So the respect of the fixed emission reduction target was from the beginning on assured. The French team decided to only represent policy measures that were judged to be acceptable by the invited stakeholders in the scenario. As these measures were not strong enough to reach the aimed target (-75%) a second scenario (less acceptable in the eyes of the stakeholders) with additional measures was developed.

While the reduction objectives for France and Germany are different in relative terms, the emissions per capita were substantial lower in France than in Germany in 1990 (7 tons versus 12 tons). Because of this, the reduction objectives are similar in absolute terms in the two countries. The objective both equals emissions in 2050 to 1.8 t/CO2 per capita - based on the assumption of a stable population. Because the population is decreasing in Germany (expected 12% decrease for 2010-2050) and increasing in France (expected 15% increase for 2010-2050), the per capita emissions will actually be almost 30% smaller in 2050 for France than for Germany with the emission reduction objectives used in this project.

Also the choice of the emission scope is an important topic: In France a 68% CO2 emissions reduction in 2050 represents only a 46% decrease of the total French green house gas (GHG) emissions and only -29% of the total consumption-related French GHG emissions. The focus of energy related CO2 emissions in the ENCI-LowCarb project was determined by the choice of the modelling tools.

Global Vision as Framework for National Scenarios

Before an energy-economy model generates meaningful national scenarios over longer periods, the development of certain parameters on the global level must be defined. As a country is not an island, global evolutions influence the national developments and conversely national scenarios have to be embedded in global structures. Such a set of assumptions, which describes the evolution of certain parameters on the global level, is called a “global vision” or “world vision”. For the ENCI-LowCarb Project we used similar global visions for the German and French scenarios. Among the assumptions were that developments in Germany and in France do not influence the world market, but that they can influence the costs of technologies to some degree if they are considered as important actors. Fossil fuels prices for instance are not influenced by the national scenarios, while the costs of renewable energy technology can be influenced as learning rates are considered to have a worldwide impact. For the French national scenarios the stakeholders discussed the development of scenarios with different global visions. The global vision they considered to be realistic (not acceptable or desirable) describes a world without a global climate agreement, high fossil fuel prices, and with consumption styles that remain material intensive. Emerging and developing countries mimic this western consumption pattern over the scenario period, thereby even increasing the pressure on natural resources and the challenge to respect ambitious climate targets.

The global vision is one determinant for the result of a scenario, but by far not the only one. Descriptions of the national situations, model architecture, and of course stakeholder choices are other major factors determining the scenarios.
Read more: on the scenario development process, and on the global visions and other assumptions used for the ENCI-LowCarb Project’s scenarios for France and Germany, including reports: “Acceptance and Economic Assessment of Low Carbon Scenarios. A participatory approach applied to France”, Ruben Bibas, Sandrine, Meike Fink et. al. March 2012, and “REMIND-D: A Hybrid Energy-Economy Model of Germany”, Eva Schmid et. al., January 2012.
Download from: Reports, Posters, Fact Sheets or from Reports at www.enci-lowcarb.eu .

- Poster: "German Scenarios with REMIND-D", German Scenario Matrix for 85% CO2 Reduction by 2050,   (pdf file 0.15 MB)

- Poster: "French Scenario with IMACLIM-R", French Acceptable Scenario 68% CO2 Reduction by 2050,   (pdf file 0.3MB)

- Fact Sheet: 
"The German Model - Remind-D and Scenario" (2-page fact-sheet, 0.3 MB)

- Fact Sheet:
"The French Model - IMACLIM-R - and Scenarios"
(2-page fact-sheet, 0.3 MB)

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Collaborative Scenario Creation Processes for Germany and France.


ch 15, 2012
Paris, France
Final Conference

• Newsletter No.9, March 2012March, 2012
Newsletter # 9