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1 Executive Summary //

Building on the previous scenario reports, the cooperative work of electricity and gas planning experts across Europe, the joint TYNDP 2024 Scenarios Report is more ambitious, more inclusive, and more transparent than previous editions. The TYNDP 2024 scenarios align with the energy efficiency first principle, the EU’s 2030 energy and climate targets, its 2050 climate neutrality objective and ENTSO-E and ENTSOG have gone to great lengths to capture the impact of the fast-moving and fast-paced energy transition on electricity and gas infrastructure. This joint report is the building block of the future electricity and gas TYNDPs and contains a series of important highlights for the future of Europe’s energy system:

1.1 Energy efficiency is key step to achieve the EU Climate and Energy objectives

All our scenarios are built upon 2030 National Trends Scenario, which demonstrates the union energy efficiency and renewable energy directive objectives. Fast implementation of efficiency first principle is key to achieve both targets but also key to minimise long-term challenges of decarbonising the energy supply:

  • Continued improvement of existing technology options, whilst switching to new and emerging technologies where further efficiency gains can be obtain.
  • Active participation of end consumers through behavioural adaptation.
  • Increased direct electrification contributes to more efficient integration of renewable energy.
  • Early development of negative emission options is required to limit further investments post 2050 subject to the carbon budget method.
  • Further integration of the hydrogen system into the integrated energy system view.

1.2 Net Zero can be achieved by 2050 while ensuring the security of energy supply

All scenarios built on NT+ scenarios which foresee a reduction of GHG emissions of at least 55 % in 2030 compared to the 1990 level and reaches net zero in 2050. These targets are achieved with an ambitious development of energy efficiency, renewable and low carbon technology solutions in EU Member States.

This achievement requires a wide range of actions whose impact depends on an appropriate political, societal, and economic framework.

1.3 Ambitious development of renewable energy across Europe

Our scenarios meet with the EC’s renewable energy share target by reaching up to 45,4 % in 2030, which is possible through high increase on the development of wind and solar. However, all decarbonisation and renewable technologies are needed to support long term European climate and energy targets to reach net zero 2050:

  • Long-term climatic targets can be achieved through sustained growth and substantial investment in all European renewable energy sources including wind, solar and biomethane.
  • Fostering renewable energy production at consumer level (e.g., prosumers, energy positive buildings, etc.) will contribute to scaling up and embracing clean energy supply.
  • Transmission infrastructure is needed to connect areas of high renewable energy potential to the high demand centres.
  • Acceptance of energy infrastructure expansion is paramount to achieve climatic targets.

1.4 Sector Integration provides efficient decarbonisation solutions

A fully integrated system can deliver efficient decarbonisation solutions and enables the European production of electricity and gas to be carbon neutral before 2050. Integration of electricity, methane and hydrogen infrastructures provides a wide range of opportunities to solve short-term and seasonal flexibility needs in a net-zero energy system:

  • Unlocks the potentials of renewable electricity sources and allows the efficient use of electrolysis technologies.
  • Allows efficient development of hydrogen and synthetic fuels fostering further development of renewables.
  • Allows capturing optimum solutions to support energy system’s flexibility needs.

1.5 The EU methane and hydrogen production can decarbonise by 2050 to ensure a competitive, resilient, and reliable energy system

Both methane and hydrogen serve as versatile energy carriers across multiple sectors, offering substantial potential to contribute to Europe’s decarbonisation efforts. This allows the EU to maintain a more resilient and reliable energy system, based on all available technologies and energy carriers.

With the development of renewable hydrogen, biomethane and decarbonisation technologies, the EU can decarbonise nearly 80 % of its gas production by 2030 in National Trends and decarbonise completely until 2050. Furthermore, natural gas import levels are reduced to zero by 2050, contributing to the independence of the EU from fossil fuels imports.

1.6 Direct electrification is key to achieve the decarbonisation objectives when it can ensure an efficient use of renewable energy

The notable increase in direct electrification is driven by Europe’s shift away from fossil fuels, underscoring the region’s commitment to enhancing energy efficiency and accelerating decarbonisation.

  • Increase in direct electricity is most energy efficient solution to achieve EU’s energy and climate targets.
  • Increased electrification is witnessed in all sectors but more significantly in transport, residential & tertiary sectors.
  • Direct electricfication through significant uptake of small scale electrification technologies, such as EVs and heat pumps, are key to fulfill the efficiency first principle and reduction of air pollution.

1.7 Integrated energy systems: hydrogen is the game changer for gas and electricity systems

  • Hydrogen efficiently contributes to the transition of the current gas system into a carbon neutral and more integrated system.
  • Hydrogen unlocks the full potential of renewable electricity resources. It will contribute to a higher European energy autonomy.
  • While reducing import dependence from fossil fuels, a European hydrogen market is an opportunity for the EU to take part to a global clean energy market and to import low-carbon energy.

1.8 Innovation is key to achieve a sustainable energy future

The scenarios depict several ways in which the European energy system may evolve with the aim of reaching climate neutrality. However, it cannot be ignored that there are additional factors and challenges that go beyond what is needed for energy infrastructure planning like market design, and operational procedures.

Further attention is needed to understand the impact in the shift towards a sustainable economy including recycling and repurposing, enabling stable supply chains, use of land space and scarce resources, training of workforce, financing, and citizen engagement. Innovation needed goes beyond technical know-how to ensure the energy system is made sustainable in time for future generations.

The draft joint TYNDP 2024 Scenarios Report comes with wider data sets available through a dedicated scenarios website. These scenario data sets can be used by stakeholders to do their own studies on possible energy futures. ENTSO-E and ENTSOG have also provided full transparency on how scenarios are built and how each factor influencing the development of electricity and gas infrastructure is considered. ENTSO-E and ENTSOG will continue striving to improve their scenario report, engaging as early as possible with stakeholders, increasing transparency and usability. Both associations hope this report will give readers a qualitative insight into the impact of the energy transition on Europe’s future electricity and gas networks.