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Global energy security under different climate policies, GDP growth rates and fossil resource availabilities

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Energy security is one of the main drivers of energy policies. Understanding energy security implications of long-term scenarios is crucial for informed policy making, especially with respect to transformations of energy systems required to stabilize climate change. This paper evaluates energy security under several global energy scenarios, modeled in the REMIND and WITCH integrated assessment models. The paper examines the effects of long-term climate policies on energy security under different assumptions about GDP growth and fossil fuel availability. It uses a systematic energy security assessment framework and a set of global and regional indicators for risks associated with energy trade and resilience associated with diversity of energy options. The analysis shows that climate policies significantly reduce the risks and increase the resilience of energy systems in the first half of the century. Climate policies also make energy supply, energy mix, and energy trade less dependent upon assumptions of fossil resource availability and GDP growth, and thus more predictable than in the baseline scenarios.

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  1. Calculated by the Shannon-Wiener diversity index as proposed by (Stirling 1994) and subsequently used by O’Leary et al. (2007), Gupta (2008), Jansen and Seebregts (2009) and many other studies.

  2. Since WITCH only reported oil trade, the total PES trade equals oil trade in WITCH.

  3. Kriegler et al. (this issue) provide a detailed explanation of the technological capabilities of the two models.


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This work was funded by Stiftung Mercator (

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Correspondence to Aleh Cherp.

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This article is part of a Special Issue on “The Impact of Economic Growth and Fossil Fuel Availability on Climate Protection” with Guest Editors Elmar Kriegler, Ottmar Edenhofer, Ioanna Mouratiadou, Gunnar Luderer, and Jae Edmonds.

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Cherp, A., Jewell, J., Vinichenko, V. et al. Global energy security under different climate policies, GDP growth rates and fossil resource availabilities. Climatic Change 136, 83–94 (2016).

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