The consumption of energy is expected to increase by 2030 and 2050 because of population growth. As a consequence, daily and seasonal peaks in electricity demand will increase. These combined effects cannot be cross analysed with current general methodologies assessing environmental and energy consumption impacts.
This calls for a change in the analytical framework of urban systems in order to enable a cross analysis of urban structures on the medium and long term as well as their impacts in peak demand.
The SUD project (Dynamic Urban Systems) aims to remove these scientific and operational barriers, and will develop a highly integrated system-dynamics modelling approach based on the various flows that affect the urban system (transportation, energy in building sector).
The SUD model will enable the set-up of scenarios with a number of clearly defined assumptions and modelling parameters, including social and economic constraints. This will allow an accurate assessment of current environmental impacts and technological solutions. It will also assess the sustainability of urban systems and their capacity to smooth peaks in demand to match supply (for example, dynamic management of energy demand with the development of smart grids, energy storage, etc.)