A new web service linking Climate and Economic Models


  • Exploring Low-Carbon Futures: A Web Service Approach to Linking Diverse Climate-Energy-Economy Models
  • Energies 2019, 12(15), 2880
  • Getachew F. Belete,Alexey Voinov ,Iñaki Arto,Kishore Dhavala, Tatyana Bulavskaya, Leila Niamir,Saeed Moghayer and Tatiana Filatova
  • https://doi.org/10.3390/en12152880

The use of simulation models is essential when exploring transitions to low-carbon futures and climate change mitigation and adaptation policies. There are many models developed to understand socio-environmental processes and interactions, and analyze alternative scenarios, but hardly one single model can serve all the needs. 

Climate-energy researchers have the expectation that constructing new purposeful models using as building blocks some renowned and trusted existing models could meet specific needs of research and policy analyses. However, the integration of existing models implies a challenging, sophisticated and complex coordination of inputs and outputs across different scales, definitions, data and software. 

We present in a recent paper an online integration platform which links various independent models to enhance their scope and functionality. We illustrate the functionality of this web platform using several simulation models developed as standalone tools for analyzing energy, climate and economy dynamics. 

The models we choose to integrate differ in their levels of complexity, assumptions, modeling paradigms and programming languages, and operate at different temporal and spatial scales.

To illustrate the integration process and the internal details of our integration framework, we link an Integrated Assessment Model (GCAM), a Computable General Equilibrium model (EXIOMOD), and an Agent Based Model (BENCH). This toolkit is generic for similar integrated modeling studies but it still requires an extensive ex-ante assessment to identify the ‘appropriate’ models and how to implement the links between them. 

Thanks to our platform, operators can then use the web service approach to streamline module coupling, enabling interoperability between different systems and provide open access to information for a wider community of users. Read the details in our paper or contact us if you want to know even more.