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Achieving climate targets may require additional investments of £35bn–£80bn

7 February 2017

Driving into the future © Kevin Dooley on Flickr

A new wholeSEM paper ‘Investment appraisal of cost-optimal and near-optimal pathways for the UK electricity sector transition to 2050’ by Francis Li and Evelina Trutnevyte E. (2017) has been published in Applied Energy.

Past investment appraisals of the UK electricity sector transition have considered a relatively narrow range of uncertainties and have focused on the mid-term time horizon to 2030 rather than the climate policy timeframe of 2050. This paper addresses this gap by exploring an interlinked set of policy, technology and cost uncertainties related to the future UK electricity sector evolution.

The authors findings align with those of other researchers that identify a pressing need for the UK government to incentivise investment in new low-carbon generation.


• 800 future transition pathways for the UK power sector explored under uncertainty.

• Analysis combines Monte Carlo simulation and Modelling-to-Generate-Alternatives (MGA).

• Many technologically diverse pathways are found to incur similar overall costs.

• Meeting climate targets may require an additional 25–70 GW of power capacity.

• Achieving climate targets may require additional investments of £35bn–£80bn.

Read the paper

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