Modelling the future of transport: the European Commission's 2050 strategy

The 2050 strategy being developed by the European Commission for the 2019 UN Climate Change Conference (COP25) is of key importance to the future of European climate policy. The strategy's central aim is to guide European climate policy towards adhering to the Paris climate agreement, ie how to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from all sectors of the economy to limit global temperature rises to well below 2ºC.

Photo by: Pargon / Flickr

To do this, the Commission relies on the PRIMES econometric model to determine the most cost-effective pathways.

In this paper T&E:

  • Describes the model and reports on some of its technical limitations when it comes to transport;
  • Describes the consultation process of the strategy itself;
  • And proposes measures to ensure robust, trustworthy modelling, the consequences of which are crucial for environmental policy for the next decade.

This paper has a particular focus on the transport sector, both the largest source of GHG emissions in the EU and the only sector to have increased since 1990.