Energy Policy Solutions

Energy Policy Solutions

Energy Policy Solutions (EPS) helps policymakers identify and implement efficient and cost-effective policies to accelerate the transition to a low-carbon future.

Energy is a mammoth portion of the global economy. Every year, the world spends trillions of dollars on energy and the capital equipment that generates or consumes it. Most energy infrastructure is built to last for decades, which makes it crucial to get energy policy right. Well-designed and well-implemented energy policy can improve energy security and minimize emissions at no additional cost (or even net savings) to the economy. Done wrong, energy policy can waste billions of dollars and lock in dirty, inefficient systems for decades to come.

Our Work

Energy Innovation’s EPS program strives to answer two key questions:

  1. Which policies will most meaningfully reduce emissions, and how stringently must they be set?
  2. How should these policies be designed and implemented to maximize their beneficial interactions, ensure compliance, and avoid unintended consequences?
Electricity generation under net zero emissions scenario

U.S. electricity generation under a net-zero emissions by 2050 scenario

We address the first question through our free and open-source Energy Policy Simulator computer model that uses government data to estimate the environmental, economic, and human health impacts of hundreds of climate and energy policies.

Energy Innovation has developed a United States version of the simulator and has partnered with a handful of international organizations and government agencies to develop models for Canada (including a regional Alberta version), ChinaIndia, MexicoIndonesia, Poland, and Saudi Arabia — with more to come. Together, these countries represent 55 percent of global emissions.

The EPS identifies policies to achieve policymakers’ goals and recommend the most effective policies, as well as evaluate the impacts of policy or program announcements.

Domestic examples include exploring how emissions would decline if the U.S. adopted the top climate and energy policies currently enacted in other countries, and predicting the economic and emissions impacts of rolling back U.S. clean car standards

Policy contributions to meet China’s climate targetsForeign examples include identifying policies that would enable Mexico to achieve its emissions targets, policy gaps for achieving China’s climate targets in the Paris Agreement and policies to help it save billions while peaking emissions by 2030, and policies that would empower Canada to reach its commitment to the Paris Accord.

You can try out the simulator in your web browser or download the full model at https://energypolicy.solutions

A longer listing of EPS-driven research and media coverage by national and sub-national region is available online at our EPS results directory.

We address the second question in our policy design book: Designing Climate Solutions: A Policy Guide for Low-Carbon EnergyDesigning Climate Solutions is the first comprehensive guide outlining which well-designed and implemented energy policies can put us on the path to a low-carbon future.

The book explains best practices and principles for each of these top policies and includes case studies from around the world. Most of the book’s content is also available online via its complementary website.

Designing Climate Solutions graphic showing the modeled impact of implementing ten policies in the 20 top-emitting countries

Designing Climate Solutions graphic showing the modeled impact of implementing decarbonization policies across major sectors of the energy economy.


The Energy Policy Solutions Team