A slide from Christian Brand's presentation at eceee

Photo: Modelling 'Lifestyle, efficiency & limits' slide by Christian Brand

Christian Brand presented a paper on "Lifestyle, efficiency & limits: modelling transport energy and emissions using a socio-technical approach" at the eceee 2017 Summer Study on energy efficiency, 29 May - 3 June 2017 in Giens, nr. Hyeres, France.

The paper assessed how Scotland can move to a low carbon and clean transport energy system by 2050 by exploring contrasting futures that compare 'lifestyle' change and socio-cultural factors against a technology focussed transition pathway.

The paper showed that:

  • All scenario modelling studies are wrong, some are useful
  • Lifestyle change can provide earlier reductions, higher cumulative savings and lower system costs than infrastructure change
  • At the very least lifestyle change may make the achievement of radical carbon reductions such as the 90% by 2050 easier
  • Best option to meet policy targets in Scotland is combined package of radical lifestyle change and high EV pathway
  • No time for wholescale infrastructure change
  • We must deliver within the existing socio-technical system whilst fostering the need for wider system-level transformation

The session was well attended by conference participants who were cautiously optimistic on the big question of whether any of the above will (not can) be achieved on this scale and timescale.