Granular technologies to accelerate decarbonization

Wilson C ORCID:, Grubler A ORCID:, Bento N, Healey S, De Stercke S, & Zimm C ORCID: (2020). Granular technologies to accelerate decarbonization. Science 368 (6486): 36-39. DOI:10.1126/science.aaz8060.

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Of the 45 energy technologies deemed critical by the International Energy Agency for meeting global climate targets, 38 need to improve substan- tially in cost and performance while accelerating deployment over the next decades.Low-carbon technological solutions vary in scale from solar panels, e-bikes, and smart thermostats to carbon capture and storage, light rail transit, and whole-building retrofits. We make three contributions to long-standing debates on the appropriate scale of technological responses in the energy system. First, we focus on the specific needs of accelerated low-carbon transformation: rapid technology deployment, escaping lock-in, and social legitimacy. Second, we synthesize evidence on energy end-use technologies in homes, transport, and industry, as well as electricity generation and energy supply. Third, we go beyond technical and eco- nomic considerations to include innovation, investment, deployment, social, and equity criteria for assessing the relative advantage of alternative technologies as a function of their scale. We suggest numerous potential advantages of more-granular energy technologies for accelerating progress toward climate targets, as well as the conditions on which such progress depends.

Item Type: Article
Research Programs: Transitions to New Technologies (TNT)
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Luke Kirwan
Date Deposited: 02 Apr 2020 18:39
Last Modified: 18 May 2020 07:48

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