PhD dissertation: Bioenergy in the European energy transition - Integrated assessment of the long-term position of bioenergy within the context of climate targets


The doctoral thesis entitled ‘Bioenergy in the European energy transition’, assesses the long-term (to-2050) position of bioenergy in Europe within the context of climate targets. The thesis utilises the global integrated assessment model (IAM) IMAGE, developed by PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency. IMAGE is used to capture dynamics occurring between human and natural systems under varying policy interventions and to assess how these long-term interactions may steer bioenergy strategies when striving for energy system decarbonisation pathway aligned to a <2oC global warming limit.

The global scope of IAMs means they rarely are used for regional assessment of specific energy carriers. However, such global scale assessment is imperative to capture the evolution of activities outside of Europe especially as a least-cost strategy would likely rely on importing bioenergy carriers. These activities include for example the competition of the international resource base with other world regions, or the associated production emissions of imported bioenergy carriers.

However, Global IAMs are hindered by a lack of regional geographical and technological representation due to a needed simplicity in modelling efforts at this scale. Thus in a final step this thesis presents a soft-linked multi-model model framework, incorporating the global IAM IMAGE, EU energy system model PRIMES and EU-level bioenergy dedicated least-cost energy system model RESolve-Biomass. This approach bridges the divide for technological and geographical resolutions and permits a deeper assessment for national-level implications and feasibility concerns for trade logistics, cost-optimal processing and conversion routes for end-use sectors, and scale-up of BECCS deployment.

Start date and time
End date and time
Utrecht University Hall, Domplein 29
PhD candidate
Steven James Mandley
Establishment and survival of coastal mangrove trees under mechanical disturbances
PhD supervisor(s)
Prof. Dr. H.M. Junginger
Prof. Dr. D.P. van Vuuren
Prof. Dr. B. Wicke
Dr. V. Daioglou