The Effect of African Growth on Future Global Energy, Emissions, and Regional Development

“The Effect of African Growth on Future Global Energy, Emissions, and Regional Development” (preprint) published in the Journal of Climatic Change, November 2013, dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10584-013-0964-4.

FEEM Working Paper No. 28.2014

CMCC Research Paper No. RP0214

Posted: 18 Apr 2014 Last revised: 31 Jan 2015

See all articles by Katherine Calvin

Katherine Calvin

Joint Global Change Research Institute

Shonali Pachauri

International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis

Enrica De Cian

Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei (FEEM); CMCC - Centro Euro-Mediterraneo sui Cambiamenti Climatici

Ioanna Mouratiadou

Potsdam-Institut für Klimafolgenforschung (PIK)

Date Written: April 17, 2014

Abstract

Today Africa is a small emitter, but it has a large and faster-than-average growing population and per capita income that could drive future energy demand and, if unconstrained, emissions. This paper uses a multi-model comparison to characterize the potential future energy development for Continental and Sub-Saharan Africa under different assumptions about population and income. Our results suggest that population and economic growth rates will strongly influence Africa’s future energy use and emissions. We show that affluence is only one face of the medal and the range of future emissions is also contingent on technological and political factors. Higher energy intensity improvements occur when Africa grows faster. In contrast, climate intensity varies less with economic growth and it is mostly driven by climate policy. African emissions could account for between 5% and 20% of global emissions, with Sub-Saharan Africa contributing between 4% and 10% of world emissions in 2100. In all scenarios considered, affluence levels remain low until the middle of the century, suggesting that the population could remain dependent on traditional bioenergy to meet most residential energy needs. Although the share of electricity in final energy, electric capacity and electricity use per capita all rise with income, even by mid-century they do not reach levels observed in developed countries today.

Keywords: African Growth, Global Energy, Emissions

JEL Classification: Q4, Q5, Q51

Suggested Citation

Calvin, Katherine and Pachauri, Shonali and De Cian, Enrica and Mouratiadou, Ioanna, The Effect of African Growth on Future Global Energy, Emissions, and Regional Development (April 17, 2014). “The Effect of African Growth on Future Global Energy, Emissions, and Regional Development” (preprint) published in the Journal of Climatic Change, November 2013, dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10584-013-0964-4.; FEEM Working Paper No. 28.2014; CMCC Research Paper No. RP0214. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2426133

Katherine Calvin

Joint Global Change Research Institute ( email )

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

Shonali Pachauri

International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis ( email )

Schlossplatz 1
Laxenburg, A-2361
Austria

Enrica De Cian (Contact Author)

Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei (FEEM) ( email )

Campo S. M. Formosa, Castello 5252
Venice, 30122
Italy

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

via Augusto Imperatore, 16
Lecce, I-73100
Italy

Ioanna Mouratiadou

Potsdam-Institut für Klimafolgenforschung (PIK) ( email )

Telegraphenberg
Potsdam, Brandenburg 14412
Germany

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