Grey Series - Part 8: The ToC and the global energy transition

Autoren: Kai Neumann und Franc Grimm

Abstract: After we had already investigated the global transformation towards renewable energies with the GEE(R) model (Grey Series - Part 1: Renewable Energy - It Could Be Done), we took another look at the global energy transition with the ICARE model for the Federal Environment Agency and explored the role of resources even more. 

Together with Ecologic Institute, we first qualitatively investigated the nexus between climate protection and resource conservation, and then quantitatively used simulation models to look not only at the extent to which sufficient raw materials are available for the global expansion of renewable energies, but also at the effects of resource efficiency, an increased choice of photovoltaics, the import of synthetic fuels, or the substitution of greenhouse gas intensive steel and concrete with biotic raw materials.

We will address the substantive aspects of this project first with peer-reviewed publications elsewhere and only later expand on this paper. With the gray paper here, we describe the application of the Theory of Constraints (Goldratt " The Goal") and its further findings. The iMODELER has special factors for modeling process steps and resources and already shows the potential constraints (limiting factors, bottlenecks) at certain points in time. 

Other insightful aspects are the dangers of thinking of a critical path instead of a critical chain (Goldratt "Critical Chain") or a "Shifting the burden to the intervenor" archetype (Senge "The Fifth Discipline"). 

We show that late targets lead to missed targets and that energy imports of solar power or synthetic fuels that seem to make sense nationally lead to potential constraints internationally.

Here you can download the paper.

Go back