Technology Simulation Modeling
Our in-house model gTech simulates how policy and economic conditions influence technology adoption, energy use and greenhouse gas emissions. This tool allows us to:
- Produce forecasts of energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions for every Canadian province
- Evaluate the impact of policies on technology adoption, energy use and emissions
- Assess uncertainty of model forecasts through sensitivity and Monte Carlo analyses
Representing technological detail
The model incorporates existing and emerging technologies across all sectors of the economy (e.g., furnaces for home heating, alternative fuel vehicles for transportation and wind turbines for electricity generation). The model then simulates how these technologies are acquired, used to provide energy services (e.g. home heating or transportation) and ultimately retired.
Characterizing firm and consumer decision making
gTech seeks to be “descriptive”, meaning that it represents how firms and consumers make investment decisions in the real world. Unlike models that are prescriptive (e.g. solving to minimize financial costs), gTech accounts for a wider variety of factors that influence decisions regarding technology acquisition and use. These factors include a preference for familiar technologies, a sensitivity to the quality of the end-use service provided, an aversion to large up-front costs and a lack of complete information.
Balancing energy supply and demand
As a general equilibrium model, gTech balances supply and demand for all energy and non-energy commodities. This feature ensures that we capture the full impact of policies across all sectors of the economy. For example, a policy requiring the adoption of renewable electricity generation is likely to increase the price for electricity, which will in turn influence firm and consumer choices related to technologies that consume electricity. In addition, changes to household spending on electricity will influence household spending on other goods and services.