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Risk Assessment of the Low-carbon Transition of Austria’s Steel and Electricity Sectors


To limit global temperature increase below +2°C, societies need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions radically within the next few decades. Amongst other mitigation measures, this requires transforming process-emission intensive industries towards emission neutrality. One way to this end is the renewables-based electrification of industries. We present results of a recent coproduction process which brought together stakeholders from industry, policy, administration and science to co-create climate-neutral transition pathways for the steel and electricity sectors in Austria. The results summarized here are the definition of reliable pathways and the identification of associated risks pertaining to pathway implementation, including a macro-economic quantification. We find that risks to implementation (barriers) are at least as important as risks of implementation (negative consequences). From the quantitative analysis we find that, provided that barriers can be reduced, macroeconomic costs of the transition are only moderate and that stakeholders might overestimate risks, when neglecting economy-wide feedbacks.

Funding source: This research was conducted within the framework of the TRANSrisk project which has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 642260 and by the Austrian National Bank Jubilaeumsfonds under project EFFECT (project number 16282).
Related subjects: Applications & Pathways
Countries: Austria

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