PowerWeb Lecture: Aiding planning and decision making for the energy transitions: a case study of the Port Industrial Complex in Rotterdam

20 mei 2021 16:00 t/m 17:00 - Locatie: Zoom | Zet in mijn agenda

By Jan Kwakkel - Associate Professor at TU Delft; faculty of Technology, Policy and Management
Hosted by the PowerWeb Institute
Date: Thursday 20 May 2021
Time: 4-5pm CEST
Moderator: professor Peter Palensky

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There is a societal need for transitioning towards a carbon neutral energy system. To realize this ambition, however, existing infrastructure networks need to undergo substantial changes. This is problematic because space for novel infrastructure is at a premium, changing the infrastructure networks will change the interdependencies amongst the various actors, there are legal and other institutional barriers for the coordinated development of these infrastructure networks, and there is profound uncertainty about the future energy generation portfolio and technological developments. As a result, infrastructure planning and decision making has stalled, which given the long lead times on implementing infrastructure investments undermines the shared ambition of transitioning towards a carbon neutral energy system. How can we overcome this decision paralysis?

In the context of climate change adaptation, researchers have been struggling with similar problems. In response, the field of decision making under deep uncertainty emerged. This research field is developing and testing decision aiding methods in the context of deep uncertainty about the future, contested knowledge claims, and diverging values. These methods rest on three key ideas: massive computational scenario analysis, adaptive planning, and constructive decision aiding. One example of where these ideas are being applied in practice is in the Dutch Delta Programme, which is adapting the Dutch water system to a changing climate.

In a pilot project in the Port Industrial Complex in Rotterdam, a large consortium composed of key actors is experimenting with applying various deep uncertainty methods. The specific focus is on how to utilize the expected future influx of wind energy from sea for starting to decarbonize the Port Industrial Complex. In this talk, I will introduce various ideas from the field of decision making under deep uncertainty and showcase how they are being adapted in the specific context of planning the energy transition in the Port Industrial Complex in Rotterdam.

Jan Kwakkel is an associate professor. His research interest is model-based support for decision making under deep uncertainty. His research focuses on the developing and testing innovative model-based techniques for the design of dynamic adaptive policy pathways. Within this, he is particularly interested in how to bring moral considerations into the quantitative analysis. He has applied his research in a range of domains including climate adaptation, flood risk management, transport and logistics, resource economics, and national safety and security. He is the lead developer of an open source workbench for exploratory modeling, scenario discovery, and multi-objective robust optimization. Next to his research on decision making under deep uncertainty, Dr. Kwakkel also has an interested in text mining with a focus on analyzing scientific publications and patents.

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