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Bidirectional Coupling of the Long-term Integrated Assessment Model REgional Model of INvestments and Development (REMIND) v3.0.0 with the Hourly Power Sector Model Dispatch and Investment Evaluation Tool with Endogenous Renewables (DIETER) v1.0.2

Referierte Aufsätze Web of Science

Chen Chris Gong, Falko Ueckerdt, Robert Pietzcker, Adrian Odenweller, Wolf-Peter Schill, Martin Kittel, Gunnar Luderer

In: Geoscientific Model Development 16 (2023), 17, S. 4977–5033


Integrated assessment models (IAMs) are a central tool for the quantitative analysis of climate change mitigation strategies. However, due to their global, cross-sectoral and centennial scope, IAMs cannot explicitly represent the temporal and spatial details required to properly analyze the key role of variable renewable energy (VRE) in decarbonizing the power sector and enabling emission reductions through end-use electrification. In contrast, power sector models (PSMs) can incorporate high spatiotemporal resolutions but tend to have narrower sectoral and geographic scopes and shorter time horizons. To overcome these limitations, here we present a novel methodology: an iterative and fully automated soft-coupling framework that combines the strengths of a long-term IAM and a detailed PSM. The key innovation is that the framework uses the market values of power generations and the capture prices of demand flexibilities in the PSM as price signals that change the capacity and power mix of the IAM. Hence, both models make endogenous investment decisions, leading to a joint solution. We apply the method to Germany in a proof-of-concept study using the IAM REgional Model of INvestments and Development (REMIND) v3.0.0 and the PSM Dispatch and Investment Evaluation Tool with Endogenous Renewables (DIETER) v1.0.2 and confirm the theoretical prediction of almost-full convergence in terms of both decision variables and (shadow) prices. At the end of the iterative process, the absolute model difference between the generation shares of any generator type for any year is < 5 % for a simple configuration (no storage, no flexible demand) under a “proof-of-concept” baseline scenario and 6 %–7 % for a more realistic and detailed configuration (with storage and flexible demand). For the simple configuration, we mathematically show that this coupling scheme corresponds uniquely to an iterative mapping of the Lagrangians of two power sector optimization problems of different time resolutions, which can lead to a comprehensive model convergence of both decision variables and (shadow) prices. The remaining differences in the two models can be explained by a slight mismatch between the standing capacities in the real world and optimal modeling solutions based purely on cost competition. Since our approach is based on fundamental economic principles, it is also applicable to other IAM–PSM pairs.

Wolf-Peter Schill

Head of the research area „Transformation of the Energy Economy“ in the Energy, Transportation, Environment Department