Sunday, February 13, 2005

Energy to 2050 Scenarios for a Sustainable Future

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Publication Year: 2003 Publication Type: Studies

Analysing the interaction between energy and climate change mitigation issues requires the adoption of a long-term perspective - looking up to fifty years ahead. The future is, by definition unknown and cannot be predicted, particularly over longer periods. However, strategic planning and political decisions demand that we explore options for the future – and these are best developed through scenarios (conjectures as to what might happen in the future based on our past and present experience of the world and on plausible speculation about how these trends may further evolve).

This volume introduces different types of scenarios, evaluating how they can be used to analyse specific aspects of the interaction between energy and environment over the longer term. It examines “exploratory scenarios” (based on different expectations of technical and/or policy developments over the next 50 years) and “normative scenarios” (based on a set of desirable features or “norms” that the future world should possess).

These long-term scenarios complement the IEA’s World Energy Outlook, which presents a mid-term business-as-usual scenario with some variants. The analysis in this volume seeks to stimulate new thinking in this critical domain. It contributes to our collective thinking about how to solve the challenges of climate change in the context of a more secure and sustainable energy future.