For the achievement of the 2-degree goal set out 2015 in the Paris Agreement, two central strategies have to be implemented in all countries:
- enhancing energy efficiency (EE) and
- decarbonizing remaining energy supply and demand, in particular by large penetration of renewable energy sources (RES).
Scenarios with different focusses and assumptions have been developed to map this development until 2050. While these scenarios present a major step forward beyond previous modelling approaches by integrating societal trends as increasing climate awareness or circular economy, much more progress is necessary to enhance the empirical basis for such New Societal Trends and their representation in models.
New Societal Trends are understood as societal developments arising from general Megatrends, which can have potentially large (increasing or decreasing) impacts on energy consumption as well as cross-sectoral demand shifts.
Those New Societal Trends are not simply the extrapolation of already presently observed trends (“continuous or linear trends”) but may take up speed when they are embraced by larger parts of the society (“disruptive or non-linear trends”). Such trends include:
- Transition of Consumers to Prosumagers,
- Move towards a Circular Economy and a Low-carbon industry,
- Digitalisation of the Economy and of private lives,
- Trends towards a Shared Economy
and will be the main focus of the present project. In this context, newTRENDs is developing the analytical basis for a “2050 Energy Efficiency Vision” taking into account New Societal Trends in energy demand modelling.