The energyPATHWAYS model is a professional, open-source energy and carbon planning tool for use in evaluating long-term, economy-wide greenhouse gas mitigation scenarios. Basic outputs include energy consumption, costs, emissions, and infrastructure build with very high granularity.
EnergyPATHWAYS is not a forecasting tool, but instead uses a bottom-up, backcasting approach–starting first with a goal and then working to demonstrate what physical infrastructure changes are required to reach that goal and when those changes must happen. This scenario approach allows the model to easily perform “what if” analysis and to reflect the underlying physics of our energy system with sufficient granularity for effective communication.
The most notable distinctions between EnergyPATHWAYS and similar tools are in the electricity sector where it uses a detailed hourly electricity dispatch. This is unusual when modeling the whole energy economy, but we believe this is critical because the electricity sector turns out to be paramount in deep decarbonization for two reasons: (1) Renewables are a leading source for carbon free electricity, but are intermittent and require special treatment and (2) Electrification of end uses that are currently point sources for emissions (Ex. cars, building heating, industrial processes) turns out to be a necessary decarbonization strategy when paired with high renewables, nuclear, or CCS in the electricity sector.
Sets of monitoring indicators and indices, Scenario builders, forecasting and back-casting methodologies