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The Costs of Decarbonisation

System Costs with High Shares of Nuclear and Renewables

Published on January 29, 2019

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Under the Paris Agreement, OECD countries agreed to aim for a reduction of their greenhouse gas emissions sufficient to hold the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2°C above pre industrial levels. This commitment requires a massive effort to decarbonise energy and electricity generation, a radical restructuring of the electric power sector and the rapid deployment of large amounts of low-carbon generation technologies, in particular nuclear energy and renewable energies such as wind and solar PV.This study assesses the costs of alternative low-carbon electricity systems capable of achieving strict carbon emission reductions consistent with the aims of the Paris Agreement. It analyses several deep decarbonisation scenarios to reach the same stringent carbon emission target but characterised by different shares of variable renewable technologies, hydroelectric power and nuclear energy.