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Environment

Decarbonisation of heat in Europe: implications for natural gas demand

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Thursday, May 24, 2018
Abstract in English: 
The EU has so far mostly focused on the electricity sector to reduce her greenhouse gas emissions. To meet its target, though, Europe will have to focus on other sectors, such as heating and cooling. The latter is Europe's single largest energy consumer, covering half of Europe's energy demand. 42% of Europe's current energy supply comes from natural gas. Therefore, the gas industry needs to understand the implications of the decarbonisation of the heating and cooling sector on natural gas demand.
However, the role of those sectors in the natural gas demand is still not properly understood. This paper tries to fill this vacuum by studying the heating and cooling sector in Europe, with a special focus on the implications for the gas industry, especially for the natural gas demand.
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64
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Wold Energy Issues Monitor 2018

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Tuesday, May 15, 2018
Abstract in English: 
The monitor helps to define the world energy agenda and its evolution over time. It provides a high-level perception of what constitute issues of critical uncertainty, in contrast to those that require immediate action or act as developing signals for the future. It is an essential tool for understanding the complex and uncertain environment in which energy leaders must operate, and a tool through which one can challenge own assumptions on the key drivers within the energy landscape.
This ninth iteration of the monitor is based on insights provided by more than 1,200 energy leaders to provide over 30 national assessments across six regions. It first discusses global issues regarding energy, then deliver country by country assessments of what the latter's national energy agendas should look like.
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128
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State of the World’s Plants - 2017

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Wednesday, May 10, 2017
Abstract in English: 
Last year's State of the World’s Plants report focused predominantly on synthesising knowledge of the numbers of different categories of plants: How many vascular plants are currently known to science? How many are threatened with extinction? What is the number of plants with uses? etc. We also looked at the main threats to these plants, including climate change, land- use change, invasive plants, disease and over-exploitation. However, simply knowing how many plants there are and how many are under threat is not enough – what is also needed is an understanding of why some plants are more vulnerable than others. This year, therefore, we have also examined the emerging evidence for the characteristics of plants that appear to make some types less/more resilient to current and future threats.
It is not all doom and gloom, however. In this year’s State of the World’s Plants, we also highlight the rapidly accumulating discoveries and knowledge that provide important sign-posts to the next food crops, medicines, timbers etc. Information is now also emerging on the effectiveness of conservation actions and policies in protecting some of the most important plant species and communities across the globe. While there is still much more to do, these positive outcomes demonstrate that with scientific knowledge and evidence-based global actions, it is possible to conserve the extraordinary diversity of plants on Earth and to build on the unique combination of beauty and science which can together provide some of the solutions for the global challenges facing humanity today.
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100
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Farm performance and climate

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, May 15, 2017
Abstract in English: 
This study examines the effect of climate variability and climate change on the productivity of Australian cropping farms between 1977–78 and 2014–15. The productivity of Australian cropping farms is heavily affected by climate variability, particularly the occurrence of droughts. While Australian farmers are well accustomed to managing this variability, the emergence of climate change is presenting some new challenges.
This study combines ABARES farm survey data with spatial climate data to estimate the effect of climate conditions (such as, rainfall and temperature) on cropping farm TFP (Total Factor Productivity, i.e the combined productivity of labor and capital). The study then presents climate adjusted productivity estimates with the effects of climate removed. For comparison, similar results are generated for farm wheat yields using the same data sources and methods.
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71
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Gas in the European Energy Transition: Challenges and Opportunities

Title Original Language: 
Le gaz dans la Transition Energétique Européenne: Enjeux et Opportunités
Abstract Original Language: 
Les performances environnementales du gaz lui permettent de réduire rapidement et dès maintenant les émissions de CO2 du secteur électrique quand il remplace le charbon, deux fois plus émetteur. Sa flexibilité lui permet aussi de pallier l'intermittence du solaire et de l'éolien, facilitant ainsi le développement des ENRs. Il contribue de même à un approvisionnement électrique fiable et réduit les coûts d'équilibrage du système électrique. Il pourrait aussi être utile pour réduire les émissions des transports routiers et maritimes.
Le gaz a donc toute sa place dans le futur bouquet énergétique européen, a condition de décarboner encore son usage, d'augmenter l'intégration et la compétitivité du marché gazier européen et d'assurer la sécurité d'un approvisionnement qui dépendra de plus de plus des importations extra-européennes.
Original Language: 
Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, January 15, 2018
Abstract in English: 
Thanks to its environmental performance, gas can help to quickly reduce the CO2 emissions of the electricity production when replacing the twice-as-emitting coal power. Its flexibility also help make up for the intermittence of the sun and wind powers, thus facilitating to the development of the renewable energy production. It similarly contributes to a reliable electricity supply and reduce the balancing cost of the electric system. It could also be used in the near future to reduce the emissions of the road and maritime transportation sectors.
In nutshell, gas could play a key role within the future European Energy Cluster, provided the further decarbonization of it usage, the increase in the integration and competitiveness of the European gas market, and the securing of its supply-which will increasingly depend on extra-European imports.
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90
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The rise of offshore wind power in the North Sea

Title Original Language: 
L'essor de l'éolien offshore en Mer du Nord
Abstract Original Language: 
Les acteurs industriels européens ont su préserver le marché de l'éolien offshore pour leurs produit et services. Le savoir-faire ainsi acquis les place en bonne position sur ce marché, dont le potentiel paraît immense. Cependant, la compétition ne fait que débuter et de nombreux groupes extra-européens ont déjà pris des parts dans des projets en Mer du Nord, acquérant à leurs tours les compétences nécessaires pour essaimer sur d'autres rivages.
Autour de la Mer du Nord, les politiques de soutien à ce secteur ont évolué vers des procédures concurrentielles, notamment par des appels d'offre. Jointe à une maîtrise technologique croissante, cette démarche a abouti à une remarquable baisse des coûts pour les projets annoncés après 2018, dans les pays déjà équipés. La compétitivité ainsi accrue de l'éolien offshore offre des perspectives considérables en Mer du Nord. Hélas, elle bute encore sur les coûts d'extension du réseau électrique. A l'heure où chaque Etat mène sa propre politique énergétique, la coordination interétatique est indispensable pour minimiser les coûts d'exploitation de cette ressource.
Original Language: 
Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, July 16, 2018
Abstract in English: 
Over the past years, European industry players have acquired a significant know-how that they can value on the promising global offshore wind market. Yet, competition is still at an early stage and many non-European stakeholders have taken shares in projects in the North Sea, hoping to gain similar expertise before wandering to other shores. Support policies have recently moved to competitive tenders ad, combined with a growing technological lead, the have contributed to a remarkable fall in prices announced for projects to be commissioned after 2018. Offshore wind represents a strategic opportunity for Europe but requires strong investments in grid infrastructures. While each national government is currently defining its own targets and support schemes, cross-border coordination is imperative to guarantee the integration of massive wind production at minimal cost.
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46
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Digital Decarbonization: Promoting Digital Innovations to Advance Clean Energy Systems

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, June 18, 2018
Abstract in English: 
A digital revolution is sweeping the global energy sector. As energy industries produce ever more data, firms are harnessing greater computing power, advances in data science, and increased digital connectivity to exploit that data. These trends have the potential to transform the way energy is produced, transported, and consumed.
An important potential benefit of this digital transformation of energy is a reduction in global emissions of greenhouse gases that cause climate change; the elimination of such emissions from the global economy is known as decarbonization. By enabling clean energy systems that rely on low-carbon energy sources and are highly efficient in using energy, digital innovations in the energy sector can speed decarbonization. Yet they are not guaranteed to do so. In fact, digital innovations could well increase global greenhouse emissions, for example, by making it easier to extract fossil fuels.
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146
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National climate change vulnerability and risk assessments in Europe, 2018

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Tuesday, April 24, 2018
Abstract in English: 
This report provides the first systematic review of national climate change impact, vulnerability and risk assessments across Europe. It is based on information about relevant multi-sectoral assessments reported from EEA member countries. The purpose of the report is to share experiences and knowledge and to highlight approaches and practical solutions that countries have used to produce and present their assessments.
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84
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Perspectives on transitions to sustainability

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Wednesday, March 14, 2018
Abstract in English: 
The overall ambition of this report is to provide an initial analytical overview of framings, conceptualisations and selected analytical tools relating to sustainability transitions and transformations, bringing together insights from multiple academic communities. The report aims to illustrate how these different perspectives relate to each other and to begin to explore what potential guidance they offer for policymaking and governance more broadly.
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164
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Developing the EU long term climate strategy

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Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Wednesday, April 18, 2018
Abstract in English: 
Designing a new long-term climate strategy (LTCS) implies decisions about how to deal with important climate policy questions. These decisions will shape the strategy and therefore the European climate policy debate.
Given the different tasks an LTCS will need to perform, several coordinated strategy documents with clearly defined purposes will be needed: a sequence (or suite) of strategic documents that outline the EU’s decarbonisation strategy for different audiences.
Given the wide-ranging implications of the drive for net-zero emissions and the limited power of the European Commission to push through top-down legislation, soft instruments such as the LTCS are crucial. A transparent and participatory process in developing the LTCS is therefore vital to generate the buy-in from stakeholders that is necessary to underpin the climate policies that will meet the ambitious goals of the Paris Agreement.
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12
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