The TRANS-TOOLS model is developed to be the core detailed transport analysis tool for the EU. Its policy forecasting capabilities can be significantly enhanced by linking it with state-of-the-art tools in the field of energy, environment and economic analysis.
The iTREN-2030 project intends to create this linkages.
The overall objective of the project was to extend the forecasting and assessment capabilities of TRANS-TOOLS to new policy issues, in particular those arising from the technology, environment and energy fields.
The specific objectives were:
- to link environmental assessment capabilities to TRANS-TOOLS by connecting to TREMOVE;
- to link detailed energy price and technology driven cost changes to TRANS-TOOLS by connecting to POLES;
- to measure indirect economic impacts of transport policies (welfare, GDP, employment), by connecting to ASTRA;
- to extend forecasting horizon of TRANS-TOOLS and TREMOVE until 2030;
- to generate a coherent baseline for: TRANS-TOOLS, TREMOVE, POLES, ASTRA;
- to consider user needs and compare with forecasts of previous studies.
The outputs of the project are of different kind:
- Scientific and policy-relevant outputs:
- improved quality and reliability of tools;
- enhanced scope of tools for impact assessment;
- integrated and detailed analysis of policies;
- interaction between members of scientific community and policy-makers.
- Potential policies to be tested:
- 'conventional' transport policies (e.g. pricing, (fuel) taxation, infrastructure);
- transport technology policies e.g. emission standards, fuel efficiency standards, alternative engine technologies (e.g. CNG, hydrogen, bioethanol);
- energy policy e.g. introduction of alternative fuels like biofuels or hydrogen, emission certificates
- Indicators (absolute and change to baseline):
- transport performance, vehicle-kilometres, modal-split, fuel consumption byfuels, emissions, fleet composition, technology paths, energy prices, economic impacts, employment etc.
The activities were grouped into six work packages:
- Forum on user's needs and project linkages;
- 'Achieving the time horizon 2030';
- Translating technology and energy trends into the transport world;
- Producing a coherent baseline until 2030 with the four iTREN-2030 tools;
- Impact assessment of scenarios of previous studies and comparison of results;
- Project management.
A key task of iTREN-2030 was to generate a consistent baseline development until 2030 that is reflected by each of the four tools. This baseline integrates and harmonises technological developments on the energy and transport side, energy prices and economic trends with demand for energy and transport and their environmental impacts. The baseline will be compared with experiences of past projects and it will be shown how the combination of tools fits to the user needs for forecasting and policy analysis of a large spectrum of energy and transport policies.
The iTREN-2030 project created an interlinked, consistent toolbox of the four models TRANSTOOLS, TREMOVE, POLES and ASTRA and applied it to the Reference Scenario. For the Integrated Scenario which took the economic crisis as well as ambitious energy and climate policies into consideration, only the latter three models could be applied due to the limited adaptability of TRANSTOOLS in iTREN-2030.
The Integrated Scenario enabled policy conclusions relevant for energy and transport in the next two decades to be derived, in particular with respect to climate policy. The EU target to reduce total GHG emissions by -20% by 2020 compared with 1990 would be achieved in the Integrated Scenario. However, the reductions in the transport sector fall short of what is proposed, i.e. instead of reducing GHG emissions by -10% by 2020 compared with 2005, the transport sector only achieves -7% reductions, which is still a remarkable result. The gap between reductions and targets for 2030 becomes more substantial, as although studies suggest reduction targets of about -30%, only -12% are achieved. Thus more policies will have to be developed for the period after 2020.
Further research to improve, or to apply the iTREN-2030 model suite is recommended in the following three directions.
- Thorough realignment of the TRANSTOOLS model so that it can be applied as a strategic model with short response times, enabling the two-way integration of TRANSTOOLS into a wider model system, with energy and economic models.
- Developing further scenarios with the model system, in particular adapting trends for which it was found in iTREN-2030 that either a great range of developments is possible or that the iTREN-2030 scenarios reflect trends that are at the outer ranges of possible developments. One example would be to consider higher growth trends for the oil price.
- Developing and suggesting GHG reduction targets for the transport sector that fit long-term EU reduction targets and underpin them with appropriate policy programmes, to bring energy and transport onto these reduction pathways.