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Title: Comparing projections of industrial energy demand and greenhouse gas emissions in long-term energy models

The industry sector consumes more energy and emits more greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions than any other end-use sector. Integrated assessment models (IAMs) and energy system models have been widely used to evaluate climate policy at a global level, and include a representation of industrial energy use. In this study, the projected industrial energy use and accompanying GHG emissions, as well as the model structure of multiple long-term energy models are compared. The models show varying degrees to which energy consumption is decoupled from GDP growth in the future. In all models, the sector remains mostly (>50%) reliant on fossil energy through 2100 in a reference scenario (i.e., absent emissions mitigation policies), though there is significant divergence in the projected ability to switch to alternative fuels to mitigate GHG emissions. Among the set analyzed here, the more technologically detailed models tend to have less capacity for switching from fossil fuels to electricity. This highlights the importance of understanding of economy-wide mitigation responses and costs as an area for future improvement. Analyzing industry subsector material and energy use details can improve the ability to interpret results, and provide insight in feasibility of how emissions reduction can be achieved.
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  1. Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency (PBL), Haag (The Netherlands); Univ. of Utrecht (Netherlands). Copernicus Inst. of Sustainable Development
  2. Univ. of Utrecht (Netherlands). Copernicus Inst. of Sustainable Development
  3. International Center for Research on Environment and Development (CIRED), Nogent-sur-Marne (France)
  4. Univ. College London (UCL), London (United Kingdom). Energy Inst.
  5. National Inst. for Environmental Studies, Tsukuba (Japan). Center for Social and Environmental Systems Research
  6. Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL) and Univ. of Maryland, College Park, MD (United States). Joint Global Change Research Inst.
  7. Research Inst. of Innovative Technology for the Earth (RITE), Kyoto (Japan)
Publication Date:
Report Number(s):
Journal ID: ISSN 0360-5442; KP1703030
Grant/Contract Number:
AC05-76RL01830; 308329; 2-1402
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Energy (Oxford)
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Name: Energy (Oxford); Journal Volume: 122; Journal ID: ISSN 0360-5442
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE; European Union (EU)
Country of Publication:
United States
29 ENERGY PLANNING, POLICY, AND ECONOMY; Industry; model comparison; integrated assessment; energy efficiency; climate change mitigation
OSTI Identifier: