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COVID-19 and Sustainable Energy Transitions

A special issue of Energies (ISSN 1996-1073). This special issue belongs to the section "A: Sustainable Energy".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 September 2023) | Viewed by 31226

Special Issue Editor


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Guest Editor
International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA), A-2361 Laxenburg, Austria
Interests: energy systems analysis; energy economics; energy planning; energy markets

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (Covid-19) has impacted many communities and economies worldwide. The lockdown and containment measures have reduced industrial activities, tourism, and mobility, which has influenced the energy supply chain as well as the demand for energy services. To respond to this challenge, different economic recovery packages have been rolled out to combat the persisting economic slowdown. The impact of these recovery packages on achieving sustainable energy and mitigating climate change has become a major concern in energy and climate policy forums. On the positive side, the response to Covid-19 has created some opportunities and lessons that can be applied in low-carbon energy transitions (e.g., accelerated digitalization, science-based governance, and online business platforms instead of traveling). This calls for further research on the impact of Covid-19 to offer science-based evidence for informing energy and climate policies.

To respond to this urgent need, this Special Issue aims to provide a platform for sharing scientific approaches, innovative solutions, and effective policy interventions that could promote a resilient and sustainable energy system in the aftermath of the pandemic. The Guest Editor, Dr. Behnam Zakeri, invites papers that can contribute to the call, in the form of original research or extensive reviews, addressing one or more of the following topics:

- Impact of Covid-19 on energy transitions;

- Pandemic: energy access, energy poverty, and equity;

- Covid-19 and climate change;

- Covid-19, digitalization, and the energy sector;

- Economic recovery packages and the energy expenditures;

- Role of resilient and sustainable energy systems in coping with global crises;

- Impact of Covid-19-induced lifestyle and behavioral changes on energy demand;

- Energy policy and governance in the post-pandemic era;

- Role of energy democracy and decentralization in achieving sustainable energy;

- Energy supply (fossil fuels and renewable energy) and the pandemic.

Dr. Behnam Zakeri
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Energies is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Acknowledgments: The Graphic Abstract was designed by Mr. Adam Islaam.

Keywords

  • Covid-19 pandemic
  • Covid-19 and energy sector
  • Economic recovery
  • Energy policy
  • Digitalization
  • Energy transitions
  • Resilient energy systems
  • Decentralized energy
  • Energy access and poverty
  • Covid-19 and carbon emissions

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

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23 pages, 7956 KiB  
Article
Deep Learning-Based Methods for Forecasting Brent Crude Oil Return Considering COVID-19 Pandemic Effect
by Seyed Mehrzad Asaad Sajadi, Pouya Khodaee, Ehsan Hajizadeh, Sabri Farhadi, Sohaib Dastgoshade and Bo Du
Energies 2022, 15(21), 8124; https://doi.org/10.3390/en15218124 - 31 Oct 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1388
Abstract
Forecasting return and profit is a primary challenge for financial practitioners and an even more critical issue when it comes to forecasting energy market returns. This research attempts to propose an effective method to predict the Brent Crude Oil return, which results in [...] Read more.
Forecasting return and profit is a primary challenge for financial practitioners and an even more critical issue when it comes to forecasting energy market returns. This research attempts to propose an effective method to predict the Brent Crude Oil return, which results in remarkable performance compared with the well-known models in the return prediction. The proposed hybrid model is based on long short-term memory (LSTM) and convolutional neural network (CNN) networks where the autoregressive integrated moving average (ARIMA) and generalized autoregressive conditional heteroscedasticity (GARCH) outputs are used as features, along with return lags, price, and macroeconomic variables to train the models, resulting in significant improvement in the model’s performance. According to the obtained results, our proposed model performs better than other models, including artificial neural network (ANN), principal component analysis (PCA)-ANN, LSTM, and CNN. We show the efficiency of our proposed model by testing it with a simple trading strategy, indicating that the cumulative profit obtained from trading with the prediction results of the proposed 2D CNN-LSTM model is higher than those of the other models presented in this research. In the second part of this study, we consider the spread of COVID-19 and its impact on the financial markets to present a precise LSTM model that can reflect the impact of this disease on the Brent Crude Oil return. This paper uses the significance test and correlation measures to show the similarity between the series of Brent Crude Oil during the SARS and the COVID-19 pandemics, after which the data during the SARS period are used along with the data during COVID-19 to train the LSTM. The results demonstrate that the proposed LSTM model, tuned by the SARS data, can better predict the Brent Crude Oil return during the COVID-19 pandemic. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID-19 and Sustainable Energy Transitions)
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21 pages, 3113 KiB  
Article
Impacts of Trade Friction and Climate Policy on Global Energy Trade Network
by Jun U. Shepard, Bas J. van Ruijven and Behnam Zakeri
Energies 2022, 15(17), 6171; https://doi.org/10.3390/en15176171 - 25 Aug 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1938
Abstract
The trade impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and the Russian invasion of Ukraine have raised questions about the role of trade and climate policies in energy security and global emissions. This study updates a widely used integrated assessment model (IAM), MESSAGEix-GLOBIOM, to represent [...] Read more.
The trade impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and the Russian invasion of Ukraine have raised questions about the role of trade and climate policies in energy security and global emissions. This study updates a widely used integrated assessment model (IAM), MESSAGEix-GLOBIOM, to represent complex trade networks to explicitly draw energy flows from their origins to their destination. It then examines the effects of (1) energy trade tariff policies, such as import tariffs, as a proxy to represent an unfriendly trade environment and (2) a global carbon emissions tax on the global energy trade network. Results indicate that trade tariff policies have marginal effects on the trade network, i.e., the size of trade and importing-exporting regions do not change significantly. While high import tariffs significantly reduce emissions due to reduced fossil fuel imports in the importing region, this effect does not translate to significant emission reductions globally, as trade policies only impact downstream of the energy supply chain. However, a carbon emission tax dramatically alters the trade network, by (1) reducing its size by up to 50% and (2) forming trade linkages that allow for a more complex and diverse network of suppliers. This diversity under the emissions tax scenario improves the energy security of major energy-importing regions. Moreover, under an emission tax scenario, a friendly trade environment reduces the energy system costs globally. However, trade friction, such as sanctions or high import tariffs, will increase the energy supply cost significantly, especially for energy-importing regions such as Europe, East and South Asia. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID-19 and Sustainable Energy Transitions)
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22 pages, 4987 KiB  
Article
Profitability of Prosumers According to Various Business Models—An Analysis in the Light of the COVID-19 Effect
by Maciej Sołtysik, Mariusz Kozakiewicz and Jakub Jasiński
Energies 2021, 14(24), 8488; https://doi.org/10.3390/en14248488 - 16 Dec 2021
Cited by 15 | Viewed by 2582
Abstract
The European Union has set itself ambitious emission-reduction targets—becoming carbon neutral by 2050. The member states’ energy systems are increasingly switching to renewable and decentralized configurations, in line with the EU guidelines. This is accompanied by the support for “prosumers”—entities that both consume [...] Read more.
The European Union has set itself ambitious emission-reduction targets—becoming carbon neutral by 2050. The member states’ energy systems are increasingly switching to renewable and decentralized configurations, in line with the EU guidelines. This is accompanied by the support for “prosumers”—entities that both consume and generate renewable energy. In parallel, a number of prosumer support schemes are emerging as a result of the search for optimal development paths. At the same time, the COVID-19 pandemic has significantly affected the power market, causing huge anomalies mainly in demand and billing. The objective of the study was to assess the impact of the proposed changes in the prosumer schemes on the level of benefits prosumers obtained, including the performance of sensitivity analyses reflected in different levels and stability of electricity consumption resulting from extreme situations caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Numerical computer simulations for five predefined prosumer support schemes were carried out in the R-project environment. The basic conclusion is that the prosumer benefits most from participating in the applicable discount mechanism, in which the unused energy is fed into a network storage, from which the prosumer can take 70% or 80% of the stored volume. The research also allows us to conclude that in Poland the COVID-19 pandemic has had a very significant impact on the level and profile of energy demand due to the introduction of restrictions on selected areas and economic sectors. The reduced demand is particularly visible in services (−58%), tourism and sport (−39%), and education (−19%). The analysis is an important contribution to the search for an optimal model of prosumer market development in Europe. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID-19 and Sustainable Energy Transitions)
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23 pages, 8342 KiB  
Article
Experimental and CFD Simulations of the Aerosol Flow in the Air Ventilating the Underground Excavation in Terms of SARS-CoV-2 Transmission
by Tomasz Janoszek, Zbigniew Lubosik, Lucjan Świerczek, Andrzej Walentek and Jerzy Jaroszewicz
Energies 2021, 14(16), 4743; https://doi.org/10.3390/en14164743 - 04 Aug 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1696
Abstract
The paper presents the results of experimental and model tests of transport of dispersed fluid droplets forming a cloud of aerosol in a stream of air ventilating a selected section of the underground excavation. The excavation selected for testing is part of the [...] Read more.
The paper presents the results of experimental and model tests of transport of dispersed fluid droplets forming a cloud of aerosol in a stream of air ventilating a selected section of the underground excavation. The excavation selected for testing is part of the ventilation network of the Experimental Mine Barbara of the Central Mining Institute. For given environmental conditions, such as temperature, pressure, relative humidity, and velocity of air, the distribution of aerosol droplet changes in the mixture of air and water vapor along the excavation at a distance was measured at 10 m, 25 m, and 50 m from the source of its emission. The source of aerosol emission in the excavation space was a water nozzle that was located 25 m from the inlet (inlet) of the excavation. The obtained results of in situ tests were related to the results of numerical calculations using computational fluid dynamics (CFD). Numerical calculations were performed using Ansys-Fluent and Ansys-CFX software. The dimensions and geometry of the excavation under investigation are presented. The authors describe the adopted assumptions and conditions for the numerical model and discuss the results of the numerical solution. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID-19 and Sustainable Energy Transitions)
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Review

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23 pages, 19536 KiB  
Review
Pandemic, War, and Global Energy Transitions
by Behnam Zakeri, Katsia Paulavets, Leonardo Barreto-Gomez, Luis Gomez Echeverri, Shonali Pachauri, Benigna Boza-Kiss, Caroline Zimm, Joeri Rogelj, Felix Creutzig, Diana Ürge-Vorsatz, David G. Victor, Morgan D. Bazilian, Steffen Fritz, Dolf Gielen, David L. McCollum, Leena Srivastava, Julian D. Hunt and Shaheen Pouya
Energies 2022, 15(17), 6114; https://doi.org/10.3390/en15176114 - 23 Aug 2022
Cited by 134 | Viewed by 19049
Abstract
The COVID-19 pandemic and Russia’s war on Ukraine have impacted the global economy, including the energy sector. The pandemic caused drastic fluctuations in energy demand, oil price shocks, disruptions in energy supply chains, and hampered energy investments, while the war left the world [...] Read more.
The COVID-19 pandemic and Russia’s war on Ukraine have impacted the global economy, including the energy sector. The pandemic caused drastic fluctuations in energy demand, oil price shocks, disruptions in energy supply chains, and hampered energy investments, while the war left the world with energy price hikes and energy security challenges. The long-term impacts of these crises on low-carbon energy transitions and mitigation of climate change are still uncertain but are slowly emerging. This paper analyzes the impacts throughout the energy system, including upstream fuel supply, renewable energy investments, demand for energy services, and implications for energy equity, by reviewing recent studies and consulting experts in the field. We find that both crises initially appeared as opportunities for low-carbon energy transitions: the pandemic by showing the extent of lifestyle and behavioral change in a short period and the role of science-based policy advice, and the war by highlighting the need for greater energy diversification and reliance on local, renewable energy sources. However, the early evidence suggests that policymaking worldwide is focused on short-term, seemingly quicker solutions, such as supporting the incumbent energy industry in the post-pandemic era to save the economy and looking for new fossil fuel supply routes for enhancing energy security following the war. As such, the fossil fuel industry may emerge even stronger after these energy crises creating new lock-ins. This implies that the public sentiment against dependency on fossil fuels may end as a lost opportunity to translate into actions toward climate-friendly energy transitions, without ambitious plans for phasing out such fuels altogether. We propose policy recommendations to overcome these challenges toward achieving resilient and sustainable energy systems, mostly driven by energy services. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID-19 and Sustainable Energy Transitions)
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Other

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13 pages, 868 KiB  
Commentary
COVID-19 Lessons for Climate Change and Sustainable Health
by Siddharth Srivastava, Fahad Khokhar, Archana Madhav, Billy Pembroke, Vignesh Shetty and Ankur Mutreja
Energies 2021, 14(18), 5938; https://doi.org/10.3390/en14185938 - 18 Sep 2021
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2252
Abstract
The drivers underpinning the emergence of SARS-CoV-2 and climate change attest to the fact that we are now living in the Anthropocene Epoch, with human activities significantly impacting and altering the global ecosystem. Here, we explore the historical context of zoonoses, the effect [...] Read more.
The drivers underpinning the emergence of SARS-CoV-2 and climate change attest to the fact that we are now living in the Anthropocene Epoch, with human activities significantly impacting and altering the global ecosystem. Here, we explore the historical context of zoonoses, the effect of anthropogenic climate change and interrelated drivers on the emergence of, and response to emerging infectious diseases. We call attention to an urgent need for inculcating a One Health research agenda that acknowledges the primary interconnection between animals, humans, pathogens, and their collective milieus to foster long term resilience across all systems within our shared planetary environment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID-19 and Sustainable Energy Transitions)
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