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Incorporating Ecosystem Services Into the Design of Future Energy Systems

Holland, RA; Beaumont, N; Hooper, T; Austen, M; Gross, RJK; Heptonstall, PJ; Ketsopoulou, I; ... Taylor, G; + view all (2018) Incorporating Ecosystem Services Into the Design of Future Energy Systems. Applied Energy , 222 pp. 812-822. 10.1016/j.apenergy.2018.04.022. Green open access

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Abstract

There is increasing recognition that a whole systems approach is required to inform decisions on future energy options. Based on a qualitative and quantitative analysis of forty influential energy and ecosystem services scenario exercises, we consider how the benefits to society that are derived from the natural environment are integrated within current energy scenarios. The analysis demonstrates a set of common underlying themes across scenario exercises. These include the relative contribution of fossil sources of energy, rates of decarbonisation, the level of international cooperation and globalisation, rate of technological development and deployment, and societies focus on environmental sustainability. Across energy scenario exercises, ecosystem services consideration is primarily limited to climate regulation, food, water resources, and air quality. In contrast, ecosystem services scenarios consider energy systems in a highly aggregated narrative form, with impacts of energy options mediated primarily through climate and land use change. Emerging data and tools offer opportunities for closer integration of energy and ecosystem services scenarios. This can be achieved by incorporating into scenarios exercises both monetary and non-monetary values of ecosystem services, and increasing the spatial representation of both energy systems and ecosystem services. The importance of ecosystem services for human well-being is increasingly recognised in policy at local, national and international scales. Tighter integration of energy and ecosystem service scenarios exercises will allow policy makers to identify pathways consistent with international obligations relating to both anthropogenic climate change and the loss and degradation of biodiversity and ecosystem services.

Type: Article
Title: Incorporating Ecosystem Services Into the Design of Future Energy Systems
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1016/j.apenergy.2018.04.022
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.apenergy.2018.04.022
Language: English
Additional information: This is an open access article under the CC BY license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Keywords: Ecosystem services, Energy, Scenarios, Self Organising Map (SOM)
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment > Bartlett School Env, Energy and Resources
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10059508
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