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Open AccessArticle

Low Carbon Scenarios for Europe: An Evaluation of Upscaling Low Carbon Experiments

1
Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique-Centre International de Recherche sur L’environnement et le Développement (CIRED-CNRS), Nogent sur Marne 94736 CEDEX, France
2
Centre International de Recherche sur L’environnement et le Développement (CIRED-CNRS), Nogent sur Marne 94736 CEDEX, France
3
Dipartimento Interateneo di Scienze, Progetto e Politiche del Territorio (DIST), Politecnico di Torino, Viale Mattioli, 39, 10125 Torino, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2018, 10(3), 848; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10030848
Received: 19 February 2018 / Revised: 8 March 2018 / Accepted: 10 March 2018 / Published: 16 March 2018
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Abstract

This paper focuses on transformational processes in a post Paris agreement context. It uses IMACLIM-R, an E3 (Environment–Energy–Economy) model allowing for the integration of urban forms, transport dynamics, environmental policies and behaviors. Building upon the study of a set of local low carbon experiments throughout the European Union (EU), the paper explores two contrasted stylized scenarios of the low carbon transition in Europe. It highlights that carbon pricing policies are useful guides for transition but cannot achieve the ambitious objective without significant transition costs. It shows that low carbon experiments in the transport and energy sectors are critical dimensions of complementary measures in favor of green infrastructures. Broadening and upscaling low carbon experiments helps overcome the inertias of the transport sector by fostering radical changes in infrastructures, thereby introducing deep transformations in mobility behavior. This can then generate positive macroeconomic outcomes, even though they are also dependent on specific financial support, calling for a renegotiation of the social contract based on specific fiscal reforms and measures to secure funding for these initiatives. The paper concludes with some research avenues for improving this preliminary work and calls for a better understanding of the complexity of the socio-economic patterns of both the transition and the conditions for an effective implementation. View Full-Text
Keywords: low carbon experiments; integrated assessment models; climate policies; transport; urban forms; scenarios low carbon experiments; integrated assessment models; climate policies; transport; urban forms; scenarios
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Cassen, C.; Hamdi-Chérif, M.; Cotella, G.; Toniolo, J.; Lombardi, P.; Hourcade, J.-C. Low Carbon Scenarios for Europe: An Evaluation of Upscaling Low Carbon Experiments. Sustainability 2018, 10, 848.

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