Greenhouse Gas Removal Technologies
Chapter 15: Socially Equitable Energy Transitions: Analytical Challenges and Policy Implications
Published:22 Aug 2022
Special Collection: 2022 ebook collection , ECCC Environmental eBooks 1968-2022Series: Energy and Environment
Piera Patrizio, Niall Mac Dowell, 2022. "Socially Equitable Energy Transitions: Analytical Challenges and Policy Implications", Greenhouse Gas Removal Technologies, Mai Bui, Niall Mac Dowell
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Driven by the urgency of mitigating climate change and on the global efforts to reach net-zero emissions, the transition to low-carbon energy systems will require unprecedent rates of decarbonisation, whilst being socially equitable and technically feasible. Quantitative modelling and analysis techniques are critical components of political and industrial decision making for the energy transition at the global, national, and sub-national levels. However, being near-exclusively cost oriented, current approaches do not adequately reflect the socio-economic impacts of decarbonisation strategies. This tendency has resulted in one size fits all emission mitigation pathways and in copycat policy strategies that may well exacerbate existing regional imbalances. Here, we present three key societal challenges associated with transitioning to low-carbon energy systems and we discuss current approaches in both energy modelling and policy making. We then suggest potential actions that can contribute to tackling these challenges and, in so doing, identify viable pathways for socially equitable energy systems transitions.