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Introduction to EMF 24.

This special issue of the Energy Journal documents the main findings of Energy Modeling Forum Model Inter-comparison Project (MIP) number 24 (EMF 24) entitled "The EMF24 Study on U.S. Technology and Climate Policy Strategies." This study focused on the development and cross model comparison of results from a new generation of comprehensive U.S. climate policy intervention scenarios focusing on technology strategies for achieving climate policy objectives. These scenarios enabled the community to exercise enhanced modeling capabilities that were focused on in previous EMF studies on the international trade implications of climate policies; the representation of technological change; and the incorporation of multi-gas mitigation and land use emissions and mitigation policy alternatives.

This introduction has four objectives: (1) describe the motivation for the EMF 24 study, (2) put this study in the context of other past and current IAM inter-model comparison projects, (3) describe the structure of this special issue of the Energy Journal, and (4) give a brief overview of the insights developed in the papers produced by the individual modeling teams that are included in this special issue.

EMF 24 focused on the interactions between climate policy architectures and advanced energy technology availabilities in the U.S.. It followed on previous EMF climate change oriented Model Inter-comparison Projects (MIPs): EMF 12 on carbon emission limits (Gaskins and Weyant, 1993; Weyant, 1993), EMF 14 on carbon concentration limits (EMF 14, 1996; Haites, et al., 1997), EMF 16 on the costs and energy system impacts of the Kyoto Protocol (Weyant, 1999), EMF 19 on carbon constraints and advanced energy technologies (Weyant, 2002), EMF 21 on non-C[O.sub.2] Kyoto gas mitigation (de la Chesnaye and Weyant, 2006), and EMF 22 on climate control scenarios (focusing on phased participation in a climate mitigation coalitions and the possibility overshooting long run climate targets (Clarke, et al, 2009). As such, this study was able to take advantage of all the significant model extensions and enhancements that have taken place over the last twenty years.

EMF 24 itself was the outgrowth of a study started in April 2010 and was set up to include three parallel model comparison exercises at the global, US and European Union (EU) levels as had been the case in the EMF 22 study. As the work progressed, however, that study became too large, including too many people, models, (over forty models across the three domains) and interests to deal with efficiently in one large project and so the original project was split into three separate studies on constructing and interpreting the results of climate policy and technology scenarios at the global (EMF 27, Kriegler, Weyant, et al., 2013b), US (EMF 24, this volume) and EU levels (EMF 28, Knopf, et al., 2013). At the same time there was great interest in doing a new model comparison study on the international trade dimensions of climate policy (following on an earlier attempt in EMF 18, 2002) using a largely different set of (trade oriented) global models than those included in EMF 27, and a MIP focused on energy infra-structure transitions in Europe tied into the EMF 28 study. The trade interest lead to another working group which produced a trade oriented global model inter-comparison on leakage effects and border carbon adjustments (Boehringer, et al., 2012), and the latter lead to an extension of the EMF 28 scenario analysis focusing on infrastructure constraints and opportunities (von Hirchhausen et al., 2014). Thus, the reporting on this collective work is being communicated through five separate journal special issues.

Over the last ten years, there has also been a steady and extremely valuable increase in model comparison studies organized within the European Union and other parts of the world as well as a broadening of the types of exercises being conducted in the U.S. In fact, this trend, lead, in part, to the formation of the Integrated Assessment Modeling Consortium (IAMC, 2014) six years ago to coordinate this work and make the studies truly global in scope and participation. The IAMC has now matured to the point that it has formal charter, a scientific steering committee, an annual research conference, and a world wide web site (IAMC, 2014).

Early EU sponsored inter-model comparison studies included "The Innovation Modeling Comparison Project" (IMCP, Edenhofer, et al, 2006) which noted that in the first generations of global energy-economy modeling applied to climate change, emerging from the late 1980s roughly up until the mid 1990s, technology entered through a series of exogenous assumptions. In true 'top-down' models, supply side technologies were reflected in assumptions about the elasticity of substitution between generic carbon and non-carbon sources (if any), whilst an "autonomous energy efficiency improvement" (AEEI) parameter was often used to reflect an assumed degree of decoupling between GDP and energy consumption--a single, fixed parameter encompassing both structural change in the relationship between economy and energy and the development and diffusion of demand-side technologies. Another early EU model inter-comparison study was "The Economics of Low Stabilization Project" (Edenhofer, et al. 2010) explored the economics of very low targets for stabilization of atmospheric concentrations of GHGs in the atmosphere. The objective of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) is "stabilization of greenhouse gas (GHG) concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system" (UNFCCC 1992, Article 2). Reaching the target of climate stabilization at no more than 2[degrees]C above pre-industrial levels by the end of this century--which is how the European Union (EU) interprets Article 2--is a historic challenge for humankind. To make it likely that this challenge will be met, greenhouse gas concentrations have to be limited to at no more than 450 ppm CO2 equivalent (for a 50 % likelihood) or below. The study showed that this goal requires a portfolio of mitigation options for very stringent emission reductions and requires taking globally coordinated action now.

A very important non-EMF, US based model inter-comparison study was Climate Change Science Program (CCSP) Product 2.1 (a). In the CCSP Product 2.1(a) study (Clarke, et al., 2007) actively involved each of three modeling groups--MERGE, MIT-IGSM, Mini-CAM in the model comparison process. The study produced one reference scenario and four stabilization scenarios, for a total of 15 scenarios. The reference scenarios were developed under the assumption that no climate policy would be implemented beyond the set of policies currently in place (e.g., the Kyoto Protocol and the U.S. carbon intensity goal, each terminating in 2012 because goals beyond that date have not been identified). Each modeling group developed its own reference scenario. The Prospectus required only that each reference scenario be based on assumptions believed by the participating modeling groups to be meaningful and plausible. Each of the three reference scenarios is based on a different set of assumptions about how the future might unfold without additional climate policies. These assumptions were not intended as predictions or best-judgment forecasts of the future by the respective modeling groups. Rather, they represented possible paths that the future might follow to serve as a platform for examining how emissions might be reduced to achieve stabilization.

Another more recent U.S based non-EMF Inter-Model Comparison study was the "The Asian Modeling Exercise (AME)." This was originally an outreach and capacity building oriented model comparison exercise sponsored by the U.S.E.P.A. the U.S.A.I.D., the EMF and several other groups. It was launched by Jae Edmonds, Leon Clarke and Katherine Calvin of the Joint Global Research Institute (JGCRI) at the University of Maryland and Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. It engaged a large number of global Integrated Assessment models and Asian country/regional models in a comparison of baseline, carbon cap and carbon tax scenarios. A number of study groups were formed to interpret the model results in an innovative set of cross cutting papers: (1) base year data, (2) a base line projections, (3) urban and rural development, (4) low carbon societies, (5) technology, (6) regional mitigation comparability, and (7) national policies and measures. A special issue of Energy Economics documenting the results from this study was published in late 2012 (Calvin, Clarke and Krey, 2012).

There are also a number of ongoing EU and US sponsored climate policy oriented model inter-comparison projects that are finishing or producing interim results during 2013. These include the RoSE project (Luderer, et al. 2014), the LIMITS project, (Tavoni et al. 2014; Kriegler, et al. 2014b), and the AMPERE project (Kriegler et al. 2013a) co-ordinated within the European Union, as well as the PIAMDDI and LAMP projects in the United Sates. In the EU "Roadmaps towards Sustainable Energy Futures (RoSE)" project," a set of low-stabilization scenarios under a policy target of limiting atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations at 450 ppm CO2eq by 2100 are analyzed. For comparison, another set of stabilization scenarios with a less stringent policy scenario of 550 ppm CO2 eq reached at 2100 was considered. This study focuses on a deep and systematic exploration of the importance of various scenario drivers like economic growth projections, energy resource base assumptions, and energy conversion technologies between primary and final energy for achieving such targets (Luderer et al. 2014).

The Low Climate Impact Scenarios And The Implications Of Required Tight Emission Control Strategies (LIMITS)" project is aimed at generating insight into how 2[degrees]C compatible targets can be really made implementable, including a heavy focus on financial flows (from country to country and industry to industry) and infrastructure required to convert today's energy systems to those reuired to achieve these targets in the future. This study is also examining the relationships between individual country or region action and global outcome (Tavoni, et al., 2014; Kriegler, Tavoni, et al., 2014b).

The EU sponsored "Assessment of Climate Change Mitigation Pathways and Evaluation of the Robustness of Mitigation Cost Estimates (AMPERE, Kriegler, 2014)" project explores a broad range of mitigation pathways and associated mitigation costs under various real world limitations, while at the same time generating a better understanding about the differences across models, and the relation to historical trends. Uncertainties about the costs of mitigation originate from the entire causal chain ranging from economic activity, to emissions and related technologies, and the response of the carbon cycle and climate system to greenhouse gas emissions. AMPERE is using a sizable ensemble of state-of-the-art energy-economy and integrated assessment models to analyse mitigation pathways and associated mitigation costs in a series of multi-model intercomparisons. It is focusing on four central areas: (i) The role of uncertainty about the climate response to anthropogenic forcing on the remaining carbon budget for supplying societies around the globe with energy, (ii) the role of technology availability, innovation and myopia in the energy sector, (iii) the role of policy imperfections like limited regional or sectoral participation in climate policy regimes, and (iv) the implications for decarbonisation scenarios and policies for Europe. This project is due to be completed by early 2014.

The U.S. Department of Energy sponsored "Program on Integrated Assessment Modeling Development, Diagnostic and Inter-Comparsions (PIAMDDI)," is an integrated assessment modeling (IAM) community research program on IAM model development; inter-comparisons and diagnostic testing; and multi-model "ensemble-like" analyses. The five cutting edge IAM research areas included in the program are: science and technology; impacts and adaptation; regional scale IA modeling; key intersecting energy-relevant systems; and uncertainty. The program is dedicated to improving the science of integrated assessment by doing cutting edge research in five critical areas of IAM development and integrating that research with a program of model inter-comparisons and ensemble-like activities. This program is linked closely to other climate change research programs in the U.S. and abroad. Progress on the scientific research areas is informing the model comparison and scenario ensemble tasks, and the comparisons and ensemble activities are helping set priorities for the research areas. Each research area as well as the model comparison and ensemble construction work is continually being broken down systematically, back down to fundamental first principals to help assess the state of the art and set focused priorities for the individual research efforts. A series of expert community workshops are facilitating this process. This project is due to be completed by the end of 2016 and is being closely co-ordinated with the EU sponsored AMPERE project described above.

The "Latin American Modeling Project (LAMP)" is a relatively new project patterned after the AME project but focusing on Latin American. This study was initiated by Katherine Calvin and Leon Clarke of the Joint Global Change Research Institute and is again sponsored by the U.S. Environmental protection Agency and U.S. Agency for International Development. A novel part of this study will be consideration of integrated climate change impacts assessment in major Latin American countries. LAMP is scheduled for completion by late 2014.

After this introductory piece, the wealth of results from the EMF24 study is presented in two layers in this volume. The policy and technology dimensions of the study are explored in greater depth in two separate overview papers (Fawcett, et al., 2014; Clarke, et al., 2014). In addition, nine of the 11 modeling teams that provided model results for this study developed individual modeling team papers, summarizing their experiences running the study scenarios and developing unique insights from the application of their individual modeling platforms. These insights are summarizing briefly here.

The papers produced by the individual modeling teams each produced a number of additional insights. A few of these are highlighted here and the reader is referred to the individual papers for more explanation and more insights. Using the NewERA model, Tuladhar, et al. (2014) show the extent to which broad based mitigation policies like an economy wide cap and trade system can lead to higher marginal costs an, but lower total costs, than sector specific regulatory policies like a Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) on electric power generation or Corporate Average Fleet Efficiency (CAFE) standard on automobiles. In reaching a similar conclusion with the CIMS model, Jaccard, et al. (2014) show that in some scenarios steep reductions focused only on the transportation sector can lead to almost completely off-setting increases in other sectors, leaving economy wide emissions almost completely unaffected and incurring substantial costs.

A number of modeling teams focused on limits and opportunities for rapid expansion and grid integration of intermittent renewable electricity generation technologies (principally wind and solar based). Two related major issues were addressed--the impact of regional disaggregation and grid integration constraints on renewables market penetration. Regional disaggregation of the renewable energy resource base generally leads to the isolation of higher quality wind resources which can make those resources mode competitive than would be the average quality resources over a larger geographical extent. Offsetting this in part is the increased requirement to back up renewals capacity as its share of total generation increases. Using the ReEDS model, Sullivan, et al. (2014) show how regional disaggregation of the renewables resource base can lead to a very large variation in renewables market penetration between geographical regions of the U.S. as well as larger overall nation-wide renewables generation. In addition, those calculations lead to the conclusion that, the ability to substitute renewables generations from regions where availability is low on a particular day leads to capacity value for renewables, meaning less back up power is required than would be the case of all renewables generation availability were independent. In an interesting parallel analysis using the ADAGE model, Ross, et al. (2014) shows a three to five percentage point reduction in renewables generation share across regions in a Renewable Portfolio Standard Scenario when using NREL/ReEDS specification for renewables availability and grid integration constraints.

Another set of renewables grid integration analyses are performed by Blanford, et al. (2014) using the U.S. REGEN model show the difference in electricity rate impacts between states where electricity rates are set in competitive markets and those where cost-of service regulation is practiced. For the lean Energy Standard scenario this analysis shows a larger rate increase in the cost or service regions on average owing to requirement maintain capital recovery payments to dirty generators in those regions.

In another interesting application of US REGEN (Blanford, et al., 2014) shows that a high natural gas availability/low natural gas price case actually leads to a slight increase in the cost of satisfying the Clean Energy Standard requirements as baseline energy system costs are lower with more inexpensive natural gas supplies.

Two models focused on international trade issues that could significantly influence domestic outcomes from the study scenarios. In an analysis with the GCAM model (Calvin, et al., 2014), the impact of restrictions on international trade in biofuels and use of forest lands to grow bio-fuels in the US or internationally is restricted. These alternative scenarios produce many interesting adjustments in biofuels, bio-fuels feedstock and crop production, including significant increase in U.S. crop and biofuel feedstock imports is a scenario targeted on an 80% reduction in US GHG emissions by 2050 with no bio-fuel imports permitted. In a somewhat more aggregated analysis, Sands, et al. (2014) using the FARM model show that, scenarios that target an 80% reduction in US GHG emissions, emission elsewhere in the world can be expected by 10-20% unless additional policy measures are implemented.

Finally in a very important analysis politically, Rausch, et al. (2014) using MIT's USREP model shows, calculating impacts on consumer equivalent variation by income decile, that the electricity policies considered in the study tend to be regressive, whereas the transport policies are progressive with the combination of the two turning out to be progressive for the scenarios considered in the study.

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Allen A. Fawcett (*), Leon E. Clarke (*), and John P. Weyant (*)

(*) The EMF 24 Steering Committee

http://dx.doi.org/10.5547/01956574.35.SI1.1
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Author:Fawcett, Allen A.; Clarke, Leon E.; Weyant, John P.
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