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Title: Scenarios for different ‘Future Indias’: Sharpening energy and climate modelling tools
Authors: Spencer, Thomas
Dubash, Navroz Kersi 
Keywords: India
energy scenarios
climate mitigation
energy and development
Issue Date: 21-Oct-2021
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Citation: Spencer, Thomas, Dubash, Navroz Kersi (2021-10-21). Scenarios for different ‘Future Indias’: Sharpening energy and climate modelling tools. Climate Policy 22 (1) : 30-47. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: India is crucial to the future of the global energy system, and hence to efforts to mitigate climate change. However, projecting India’s energy future is challenging because of a number of structural uncertainties related to its still emergent development process – there are multiple ‘future Indias’. This is particularly so given India’s unusual historical development pattern and economic structure. This paper reviews more than 40 energy system scenarios for India to 2050 including scenarios of different policy stringency. This analysis suggests that the task of drawing policy insights is hampered by widely divergent, often non-transparent and insufficiently discussed, assumptions about GDP and its structural attributes as implied by sectoral energy consumption, industrial intensity of GDP, and sectoral demand patterns. It is these assumptions that crucially drive the divergence in scenario results, even more than assumptions about energy and climate policy per se. While divergent results are important for exploring the range of possible future pathways, policy insights can only be generated if scenario producers adequately convey a sense of causality, probability and desirability underpinning their scenarios. This requires linking more detailed socio-economic scenario storylines with the input assumptions and output results of energy system scenarios. To improve modelling for policy insight, the paper proposes that more attention be devoted to developing overarching socio-economic development scenarios, linking these to sector dynamics, and unpacking and interpreting model results.
Source Title: Climate Policy
ISSN: 1469-3062
DOI: 10.1080/14693062.2021.1973361
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