Long-Term Transport Energy Demand and Climate Policy: Alternative Visions on Transport Decarbonization in Energy Economy Models

26 Pages Posted: 13 Feb 2013 Last revised: 14 Jan 2014

See all articles by Robert Pietzcker

Robert Pietzcker

Potsdam-Institut für Klimafolgenforschung (PIK)

Thomas Longden

Macquarie University, Macquarie Business School; CMCC - Centro Euro-Mediterraneo sui Cambiamenti Climatici

Wenying Chen

Tsinghua University

Sha Fu

National Center for Climate Change Strategy and International Cooperation (NCSC)

Elmar Kriegler

Potsdam-Institut für Klimafolgenforschung (PIK)

Page Kyle

Joint Global Change Research Institute

Gunnar Luderer

Potsdam-Institut für Klimafolgenforschung (PIK)

Date Written: February 11, 2013

Abstract

Transportation accounts for a substantial share of CO2 emissions, and decarbonizing transport will be necessary to limit global warming to below 2°C. Due to persistent reliance on fossil fuels, it is posited that transport is more difficult to decarbonize than other sectors. We test this hypothesis by comparing long-term transport energy demand and emission projections for China, USA and the World from five large-scale energy-economy models with respect to three climate policies. We systematically analyze mitigation levers along the chain of causality from mobility to emissions, and discuss structural differences between mitigation in transport and non-transport sectors. We can confirm the hypothesis that transport is difficult to decarbonize with purely monetary signals when looking at the period before 2070. In the long run, however, the three global models achieve deep transport emission reductions by >90% through the use of advanced vehicle technologies and carbon-free primary energy; especially biomass with CCS plays a crucial role. Compared to the global models, the two partial-equilibrium models are relatively inflexible in their reaction to climate policies. Across all models, transportation mitigation lags behind non-transport mitigation by 10-30 years. The extent to which earlier mitigation is possible strongly depends on implemented technologies and model structure.

Keywords: Transportation Scenarios, Carbon Emission Mitigation, Integrated Assessment, Energy-Economy Modeling, Advanced Light Duty Vehicles, Demand Reduction

JEL Classification: Q54, R41, R48

Suggested Citation

Pietzcker, Robert and Longden, Thomas and Chen, Wenying and Fu, Sha and Kriegler, Elmar and Kyle, Page and Luderer, Gunnar, Long-Term Transport Energy Demand and Climate Policy: Alternative Visions on Transport Decarbonization in Energy Economy Models (February 11, 2013). FEEM Working Paper No. 8.2013. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2214812 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2214812

Robert Pietzcker (Contact Author)

Potsdam-Institut für Klimafolgenforschung (PIK) ( email )

Telegraphenberg
Potsdam, Brandenburg 14412
Germany

Thomas Longden

Macquarie University, Macquarie Business School ( email )

New South Wales 2109
Australia

CMCC - Centro Euro-Mediterraneo sui Cambiamenti Climatici ( email )

via Augusto Imperatore, 16
Lecce, I-73100
Italy

Wenying Chen

Tsinghua University

Beijing, 100084
China

Sha Fu

National Center for Climate Change Strategy and International Cooperation (NCSC) ( email )

Beijing, 100038
China

Elmar Kriegler

Potsdam-Institut für Klimafolgenforschung (PIK) ( email )

Telegraphenberg
Potsdam, Brandenburg 14412
Germany

Page Kyle

Joint Global Change Research Institute ( email )

5825 University Research Court, Suite 3500
College Park, MD 20740
United States

Gunnar Luderer

Potsdam-Institut für Klimafolgenforschung (PIK) ( email )

Telegraphenberg
Potsdam, Brandenburg 14412
Germany

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