German-Japanese Research on Long-Term Decarbonisation Scenarios

  • Project no. 150936
  • Duration 11/2016 - 08/2017

In the light of the G7 resolutions of Elmau and the Paris Agreement in 2015, the matter of long-term decarbonisation of the energy systems in industrialised countries has come to the forefront of political and scientific agenda. However, it remains an open question how the agreements can be implemented and the objectives of decarbonisation can be reached. Alongside the discussions on the short and medium term objectives (until about 2030) like the further development of the NDCs (Nationally Determined Contributions), which should help states to develop and present future pathways for greenhouse gas emission reduction, it will also be important to focus the international community's attention on long-term goals as well as plans and action programmes on the overall decarbonisation of national energy systems and economies as a whole. This is particularly emphasised by the decision of the G7 from Elmau in June 2015, in which the states have committed themselves to develop long-term national low-carbon strategies. A similar requirement is also part of the Paris Agreement (Article 4, paragraph 15), which calls for all countries to develop and communicate "long-term greenhouse gas emission development strategies".

For Germany, numerous climate protection scenarios have already been prepared in recent years. Yet, the discussion of these scenarios has so far largely been limited to the German-speaking research community. A number of Japanese climate protection scenarios also deal with far-reaching decarbonisation strategies for the energy system, but often with a different technological focus.

Against this background, an important goal of the project is to support a German-Japanese exchange on long-term decarbonisation scenarios. Based on a meta-analysis of various ambitious Japanese and German climate protection scenarios and an assessment of existing methods and knowledge, bilateral learning processes are to be stimulated and supported. In addition, the project could help to strengthen the international perception of the research on reduction scenarios for Germany and the issues of decarbonisation and long-term climate protection in general.

Furthermore, the discussion on climate protection and decarbonisation in Germany can also be enriched by the analysis of Japanese studies. In this regard, the project intends to learn from content-related and methodological discussions in Japan in order to identify limitations and exploring opportunities to enhance the discussion within the German research community.