SPLiCE Phase 1: sustainable pathways to low carbon energy – final report

Tweed, James, Howard, David, Agnolucci, Paulo, Austen, Melanie, Fawcett, Tina, Hooper, Tara, Sims, Lee, Smithers, Richard, Stirling, Andrew, Whitaker, Jeanette, Coburn, Josie and et al, (2015) SPLiCE Phase 1: sustainable pathways to low carbon energy – final report. Project Report. Ricardo-AEA, Didcott.

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Abstract

A major transformation is underway to decarbonise UK energy generation and use in order to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 80% by 2050. Numerous potential pathways for achieving the 2050 emissions target demand significant new energy infrastructure in various forms, as well as substantial increases in energy efficiency across the economy.

The Sustainable Pathways to Low Carbon Energy (SPLiCE) research programme seeks to provide significant information about the wide-ranging potential environmental, social and economic impacts of decarbonising the UK energy system. Information needs to be presented in a way that enables informed choices to be made about different configurations of the energy system framed within a wider context. The intention is that the programme would seek to identify what is known and not known about the impacts of different energy system components and then fill any key evidence gaps, either directly or by encouraging others to do so. The full SPLiCE Programme was planned to be delivered in two or three phases. The key research questions for the whole programme are:

• How can Government compare all the significant impacts of the energy decarbonisation options available, so that evidence-based choices can be made about the best mix of options to pursue?

• How can developers, planners and regulators access comprehensive and authoritative information about the impacts of energy infrastructure and other energy choices in order to make decisions about investment, deployment and impact mitigation?

• How can Government, industry and the research community present reliable, easy to understand information on impacts in order to improve public understanding and help engage the public and other interest groups to debate and build consensus around future energy options?

Phase 1 was a scoping study to examine how these aims could be met and create a blueprint for possible future phases. The objectives for SPLiCE Phase were couched in terms of six outputs to develop an understanding of the sustainability (environmental, social and economic) of energy supply and demand options. These are summarised as:

1. A report on the significant evidence gaps on the impacts of energy supply and demand options.

2. A detailed written method for carrying out systematic evidence reviews on the environmental, social and economic impacts of energy supply and demand options.

3. A design specification and a set of data requirements for a knowledge gateway/repository (KG) which would contain the sort of impact analysis developed in output 2 above.

4. Recommendations on whether the very different impacts (environmental, social and economic) of a very diverse range of energy supply and demand options could be assessed and valued.

5. Recommendations for how information about the impacts, risks and benefits of future energy options can be made more easily available and accessible to the public in order to inform debate about choices and trade-offs 6. A recommended process/roadmap/project plan for future work.

Item Type: Reports and working papers (Project Report)
Schools and Departments: School of Business, Management and Economics > SPRU - Science Policy Research Unit
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Andrew Stirling
Date Deposited: 06 Jul 2017 13:55
Last Modified: 06 Jul 2017 13:55
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/69088

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