Abstracts on Global Climate Change
       

Jun 2007

Modelling energy systems for developing countries

Urban, F Benders, RMJ Moll, HC

ENERGY POLICY 35:6 3473-3482

Developing countries’ energy use is rapidly increasing, which affects global climate change and global and regional energy settings. Energy models are helpful for exploring the future of developing and industrialised countries. However, energy systems of developing countries differ from those of industrialised countries, which has consequences for energy modelling. New requirements need to be met by present-day energy models to adequately explore the future of developing countries’ energy systems. This paper aims to assess if the main characteristics of developing countries are adequately incorporated in present-day energy models. We first discuss these main characteristics, focusing particularly on developing Asia, and then present a model comparison of 12 selected energy models to test their suitability for developing countries. We conclude that many models are biased towards industrialised countries, neglecting main characteristics of developing countries, e.g. the informal economy, supply shortages, poor performance of the power sector, structural economic change, electrification, traditional bio-fuels, urban-rural divide. To more adequately address the energy systems of developing countries, energy models have to be adjusted and new models have to be built. We therefore indicate how to improve energy models for increasing their suitability for developing countries and give advice on modelling techniques and data requirements. (c) 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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