EUF > Policy Analysis > Scenarios for a Clean Energy Future

Scenarios for a Clean Energy Future

Project Description

The study uses a scenario-based approach to examine alternative portfolios of public policies and technologies. It seeks to develop a better understanding of the potential for R&D programs and public policies to foster clean energy technology solutions to the energy and environmental challenges facing the nation. These challenges include global climate change, air pollution, oil dependence, and inefficiencies in the production and use of energy. This report is the successor to The Five Lab Study and a previous analysis for EPA . The Clean Energy Future analysis uses a modified version of the National Energy Modeling System.

It analyzes three major policy level scenarios: Business-as-Usual (BAU), Moderate, and Advanced. The BAU forecast assumes a continuation of current energy policies and a steady pace of technological progress. In contrast, the Moderate and Advanced scenarios are defined by policies that are consistent with increasing levels of public commitment and political resolve to solving the nation's energy-related challenges. Some of the public policies and programs that define the scenarios are crosscutting; others are designed individually for each sector (buildings, industry, transportation, and electric generators) and assessed for impacts out to 2020. Numerous policies are examined, including fiscal incentives, voluntary programs, regulations, and research and development.

Jonathan Koomey (LBNL) and Andrew Nicholls (Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, PNL) were the lead authors of Chapter 4: The Buildings sector. Get more information on the buildings analysis.

Ernst Worrell and Lynn Price (LBNL) were the lead authors of Chapter 5: The Industry sector. Get more information on the industry analysis.

David Greene (ORNL) and Steve Plotkin (Argonne National Laboratory, ANL) were the lead authors of Chapter 6: The Transportation sector.

Stanton Hadley (ORNL) and Walter Short (NREL) were the lead authors of Chapter 7: The Electricity sector.

The Clean Energy Future's report uses sensitivities to analyze the impact of certain policies. A sensitivity analysis of the Clean Energy Future study's economic and carbon savings results is made by Etan Gumerman (LBNL), Jonathan G. Koomey (LBNL) and Marilyn A. Brown (ORNL). Several data files have been examined to show the information that has come out of the sensitivity analyses. More information on this analysis is on the sensitivity analysis page.

Marilyn A. Brown (Oak Ridge National Laboratory, ORNL), Mark D. Levine (Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, LBNL), and Walter Short (National Renewable Energy Laboratory, NREL) provided the overall National Laboratory leadership for the Clean Energy Future's study.

Project Staff

Marilyn A. Brown
Mark D. Levine
Walter Short
Jonathan Koomey
Etan Gumerman
Carrie Webber
Celina Atkinson
Ernst Worrell
Lynn K. Price
Andrew Nicholls
David Greene
Stanton W. Hadley
Steve Plotkin
Armande van Duin

Key Data

NEMS' results on the three main policy implementations:

Business As-Usual Energy / Carbon (Microsoft Excel 97/98, 1.2 MB)

Moderate Energy / Carbon (Microsoft Excel 97/98, 1.2 MB)

Moderate Cost (Microsoft Excel 97/98, 688 K)

Advanced Energy / Carbon (Microsoft Excel 97/98, 1.2 MB)

Advanced Cost (Microsoft Excel 97/98, 688 K)

To download more detailed scenario results, go to the sensitivity analysis page.


Scenarios for a Clean Energy Future This website contains the complete CEF report and appendices in PDF format.

Executive Summary of the Scenarios for a Clean Energy Future (PDF, 120k)

Chapter 1: Integrated Analysis and Conclusions of the Scenarios for a Clean Energy Future (PDF, 556k)

Other Resources

The Energy Analysis Department's Industrial Energy Use Group. This group assesses industrial energy use and efficiency around the world.

Energy Information Administration. The official U.S. government agency for energy statistics.

Beating the heat: Why and how we must combat global warming. This book provides a good introduction for the lay person to the issues surrounding climate change, and the potential solutions.

American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy (ACEEE): This non-profit organization promotes energy efficiency and pollution prevention through education, analysis, and advocacy.

Environmental Protection Agency's Global Warming Site: This site describes the scope of the climate problem, exploring both scientific and policy dimensions

International Project for Sustainable Energy Paths: This non-profit organization analyzes the costs of reducing carbon emissions and addresses the policy issues surrounding the design of sustainable energy strategies.

Tellus Institute, Energy Group: This organization is a non-profit consulting firm that analyzes greenhouse gas mitigation strategies and other energy policy issues

U.S. Department of Energy, Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Network (EREN): This part of DOE promotes the development and adoption of efficiency and renewable energy technologies. It also works with EPA to design voluntary programs to promote energy efficiency and reduce pollution.

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Climate Protection Division: This part of EPA designs voluntary programs to promote energy efficiency and reduce pollution.


This report was commissioned by the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. It was produced by the Interlaboratory Working Group, composed of scientists from Argonne National Laboratory, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. The Environmental Protection Agency's Office of Air and Radiation cofunded the completion of Appendix E-4.