Scenarios expertise

The World Energy Council (WEC) has been involved with energy futures for more than two decades. The WEC’s first energy futures study, Energy 2000-2020: World Prospects and Regional Stresses (ed. J-R Frisch), was commissioned for the 1983 New Delhi World Energy Congress.

Following the enthusiastic reception for this study, a second study was conducted from 1986 to 1989 under the aegis of the WEC Conservation and Studies Committee. The summary of this study, World Energy Horizons: 2000-2020, was published in 1989 under the title Global Energy Perspectives 2000-2020.

Previous studies include:

Global Energy Perspectives 2000 - 2020 (1989)
In 1989 the WEC published a report called Global Energy Perspectives 2000 – 2020 in the context of oil market volatility, the Chernobyl disaster, and a rising demand for energy which was not reflected in price. The study was a top-down effort where a total of 30 experts from 18 Member Committees and 9 international organisations supported a centrally located project team.
Energy for Tomorrow’s World (1993)
Published in 1993, WEC’s energy scenarios study “Energy for Tomorrow’s World ” was perhaps the WEC’s landmark energy futures publication. It was aimed at policymakers, industry players, and was lucid enough for the general public. Its purpose was to “achieve changes in energy policy which bring about realistic and desired goals in the most effective ways”.
Global Energy Perspectives to 2050 and Beyond (1995)
This study was conducted by the WEC in collaboration with IIASA (International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis). The scenarios detailed in this study are based on the scenarios produced in the 1993 study, Energy for Tomorrow’s World. While the 1993 study looked ahead till 2020 using four scenarios, the 1995 study looks ahead till 2050 using six scenarios.
Global Energy Perspectives (WEC-IIASA, 1998)
This study presents the output of the second phase of the WEC-IIASA scenarios study that began in 1993. The first phase, from 1993 to 1995, developed 6 scenarios which were detailed in the preceding study, Global Energy Perspectives to 2050 and Beyond. The second phase, from 1995 to 1998 involved an extensive review of the 1995 study, and also incorporated a regional outlook that lent further granularity to the global outputs specified in the first phase study.
Energy for Tomorrow’s World –Acting Now (2000)
This study revisited the original Energy for Tomorrow’s World (ETW), 1993 study. In 1998 a WEC Commission Board was set up to take a fresh look at the conclusions drawn in the ETW 1993 study in light of developments over the past 7 years. ETWAN (Energy for Tomorrow’s World – Acting Now) focussed ten policy actions based on the outcomes of looking again at the ETW study and keeping in mind WEC’s three core energy goals of accessibility, availability, and acceptability.
Drivers of the Energy Scene (2003)
Drivers of the Energy Scene was the first report of the WEC Work Programme for 2002-2004. This study is different from all previous WEC energy future studies, in that it looks at the ‘drivers’ of the energy system and does not attempt to propose an energy model or projection about the future – but aims instead to stimulate a reflection on how the energy system has worked in practice, what the dynamics of the energy markets have been, and how energy availability has impacted GDP growth and accessibility.

Policy Scenarios to 2050 (2007)
This study is the latest energy scenarios study produced by the World Energy Council. At the Sydney Congress in 2004, WEC decided to commission a new scenarios study with the following three important aims in mind:

  1. The scenarios will be based on policy and on the “bottom-up” regional and specialist work of the WEC member committees.
  2. The storylines developed in the study should be measured against the three WEC goals of energy ‘accessibility, availability, and acceptability’.
  3. The scenarios developed should have a sufficiently long-term focus to underpin clear recommendations on policies and actions that will achieve targeted results by 2050.