Numerous road maps, pathways and scenarios have been developed to describe the transition to a low carbon economy, and what technologies and technical systems are compatible with, for instance a 2° C target. Indeed, it appears that there is a joint vision emerging among key stakeholders about the overall need for this transition.
However, the implications for the industrial economy, institutions, governance and markets are far less explored, and opinions diverge significantly on specific technologies required, prospects for economic growth, and policies to enable this transition.
Reports such as Pathways to a Low-Carbon Economy by McKinsey, the International Energy Agency’s Energy Technology Perspectives and related industrial-sector studies have received attention by displaying how a low carbon economy could be achieved, in terms of new technologies needed and improved energy efficiency.
There is now a need to demonstrate not only that emission reductions are possible, but how these reductions can be enabled in terms of policies and governance structures required.
Most of the existing exercises are held at a general level, either economy-wide or sectoral, but the role, characteristics and performance of individual companies are still not clear.
This study focuses on the necessary requirements for selected key technologies to be developed and commercialised, the various structures, policies and other incentives needed to enable this development, as well as the incentives that would spur companies to move to and invest in these new technologies.