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Do Energy Scenarios Pay Sufficient Attention to the Environment? Lessons From the Uk to Support Improved Policy Outcomes

Hooper, T; Austen, MC; Beaumont, N; Heptonstall, P; Holland, RA; Ketsopoulou, I; Taylor, G; ... Winskel, M; + view all (2018) Do Energy Scenarios Pay Sufficient Attention to the Environment? Lessons From the Uk to Support Improved Policy Outcomes. Energy Policy , 115 pp. 397-408. 10.1016/j.enpol.2018.01.028. Green open access

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Abstract

Scenario development is widely used to support the formation of energy policy, but many energy scenarios consider environmental interactions only in terms of climate change. We suggest that efforts to develop more holistic energy pathways, going beyond post hoc analysis of environmental and social implications, can usefully draw on environmental scenarios. A detailed content analysis of UK energy and environmental scenarios was therefore undertaken, with energy scenarios selected on the basis that they were recent, had a direct link to energy policy, and covered a range of scenario types. The energy scenarios rarely considered societal drivers beyond decarbonisation and focused on quantifiable parameters such as GDP, while the environmental scenarios provided a richer narrative on human behaviour and social change. As socio-economic issues remain fundamental to the success of energy policies, this is a key area which should be better addressed within energy scenarios. The environmental impacts of energy scenarios were rarely considered, but could have a significant bearing on the likelihood of pathway outcomes being realised. Fuller evaluation of the environmental interactions of energy systems is therefore required. Although the analysis focuses on the UK, some international scenarios show similar limitations, suggesting that the conclusions are more widely applicable.

Type: Article
Title: Do Energy Scenarios Pay Sufficient Attention to the Environment? Lessons From the Uk to Support Improved Policy Outcomes
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1016/j.enpol.2018.01.028
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.enpol.2018.01.028
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Energy, Environment, Scenarios, Policy, UK
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/10059807
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