The Hewlett Foundation has awarded Climate Interactive a $200,000 grant to support the research, development, and public release of the simulation En-ROADS. The tool, which builds on the award-winning C-ROADS model, enables people to create and test long-term scenarios for success on climate through a variety of policy and investment levers.
With En-ROADS, anyone can explore the implications of actions such as the accelerated retirement of coal plants, carbon pricing, fossil fuel subsidies, and new zero carbon energy technologies. Results are displayed in terms of carbon emissions, temperature change, and other variables. The simulation allows people to see the interactions between actions to address climate change and take a systems view of the challenge.
“The Hewlett Foundation is excited by the huge potential for En-ROADS and the Climate Interactive team to help the public and decision-makers around the world see scenarios of climate success,” said Matt Baker of the Hewlett Foundation.
The goal of the Hewlett Foundation’s Energy and Climate work is “to ensure that energy is produced and used cleanly and efficiently, with limited impacts on human health and the environment, and that global average temperatures increase less than 2°C to avoid the worst effects of climate change.”
The Hewlett funding will be directed towards the core modeling and research behind En-ROADS, which is being vetted by a team of researchers and analysts including Stanford’s Prof. John Weyant and MIT Sloan’s Prof. John Sterman.
Co-director of Climate Interactive Drew Jones said, “This funding will enable Climate Interactive to package and put a bow on a project that can reframe conversations around climate from disparate visions of silver bullet fixes to a systems view of many solutions working together to address the climate challenge.”
Alongside the rigorous modeling of En-ROADS, Climate Interactive is developing pathways for people to engage with the simulation upon its release. Most prominent is a role-playing exercise called World Energy that has been piloted at top academic institutions to ground people in the energy and climate challenge and allow them to develop a vision for how it can be addressed. This work is being developed in partnership with the Clinton Climate Initiative, MIT Sloan, and UMass Lowell.
The team at Climate Interactive has been pioneering engaging interactive approaches to helping people see what works to address climate change and other complex challenges in our lives. In 2013, Climate Interactive was recognized as one of the top five climate think tanks in the United States.