Hydro-, wind- and solar power are key to green energy production, but future planning needs a better understanding of the tradeoffs among different options.
The goal is to provide valuable new solutions to guide the transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy while minimizing impacts on natural resources in Norway.
There are two key scientific challenges. The first is managing the transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy to mitigate the effects of climate change. A second is to minimize the effects of land use change from renewable energy on biodiversity and ecosystem services. In the project researchers and stakeholders will work together to address the technical challenges from several different perspectives.
The interdisciplinary team will develop alternative scenarios based on new technologies, impacts on carbon dynamics and ecological systems, and social and economic considerations.
Renewables vs natural resources?
opposition to wind power development has increased in Norway lately. Many have
protested that development of wilderness areas conflicts with cultural values and nature conservation.
remains the dominant source of energy in Norway and recent debate has centered
on upgrading vs developing new hydropower. So far, the knowledge on trade-offs
between water- and wind power, and different locations of wind power has been
options for renewable energy requires a better understanding of impacts on
actual area requirements, carbon budgets and biodiversity. The project will
tackle these questions with new spatial models and software tools for a
researchers will evaluate alternative scenarios where they will explore
trade-offs between upgrading hydropower turbines vs new development, siting of
wind turbines in different habitats, building electricity grids in networks vs.
corridors, or by integrating hydro and wind power together for greater
flexibility in storage and power production.
What is the
transition to renewable energy involves considerable social and economic
change. Change is always disruptive.
Whether it is an issue of changing your mind, changing policy or spending
money. But often it turns out better
than expected. It could be because we often do not consider the cost of
“before,” or do not know what the economic gain will be.
stage of the project will consider tax policy and possible economic incentives
that might favor the best scenarios and develop new policy recommendations for
decision-makers in Norway.
The goal is
to provide options and valuable new solutions for renewable energy and land
under pressure in Norway.
knowledge developed by the project will be used to make recommendations for
policymakers in Norway, so that they will better be able to make informed
decisions when it comes to land use and renewable development. Providing a more
complete accounting of the tradeoffs in terms of land use, carbon budgets and
impacts on biodiversity than have been realized before.
will also build infrastructure for research on renewable energy as a
multi-faceted collaboration among ecologists, engineers, social scientists, and
economists with complementary skills.
new tools to explore a wider range of options for renewable energy development
and to consider scenarios that are relevant to environmental groups in