Energy modelling in Europe


Energy modelling in Europe

The first conference of the European platform for energy modelling called EMP-E (“Energy Modelling Platform for Europe“) took place at the European Commission in Brussels on 17 and 18 May 2017. SNETP was represented through the SPRINT project.

This platform was created within the framework of the EU-funded project REEEM that gathers 11 European partners and coordinated by the Royal Institute of Technology Stockholm (KTH). However, the audience of this first conference was much broader as more than 40 European institutions involved in energy modelling were present.

While the first day emphasised the diversity of European initiatives and challenges in the field of energy modelling, the second day focused on the description of some models, on their transparency and other specific topic through focus groups.

During the first day, the European Commission (DG Energy) recalled how energy models are used in policy planning at the EU level. JRC also pointed the importance of improving data openness in EU energy models, in light of the open science policy recently implemented in H2020 projects (open access publications, open research data). In a second session, the conference offered a presentation of the various H2020 projects of the same call as REEEM (LCE-21) and other energy modelling initiatives in Europe. Despite the challenges, these initiatives try to fill the gap between policy questions and models.

During the second day, some institutions presented their own models: their features, strengths,  limitations, how they can be used to answer policy questions, etc. Discussions insisted on the transparency of these models and the openness of the data they use and produce. In between sessions, the participants had another opportunity to communicate about their model or learn about the others’ since an extensive poster session was organised. Finally, the second part of the day, focus groups were organised to discuss specific modelling topics including:

  • Methodologies for linking models
  • Modelling environmental impacts and externalities (life cycle assessment of energy systems)
  • Comparison of energy transition pathways
  •  Capacity expansions planning in high RES worlds

Finally, there were 3 main takeaways of this first EMP-E conference:

  • The European energy model initiatives can still progress on the way to transparency and openness of both models and data.
  •  Not only should models be benchmarked based on their performance but also on the sort of policy question they can or cannot address
  • The EMP-E platform is expected to go further than organising a yearly conference: more effort should be put into improving and using joint platforms for energy modelling.



REEM website:

Article: First Conference of the EMP-E “Energy Modelling Platform for Europe” on REEM website