Pathways to carbon-free transport in Germany until 2050
The transport sector has to be widely decarbonized by 2050 to reach the targets of the Paris Agreement. This can be performed with different drive trains and energy carriers. This paper explored four pathways to a carbon-free transport sector in Germany in 2050 with foci on electricity, hydrogen, synthetic methane, or liquid synthetic fuels. We used a transport demand model for future vehicle use and a simulation model for the determination of alternative fuel vehicle market shares. We found a large share of electric vehicles in all scenarios, even in the scenarios with a focus on other fuels. In all scenarios, the final energy consumption decreased significantly, most strongly when the focus was on electricity and almost one-third lower in primary energy demand compared with the other scenarios. A further decrease of energy demand is possible with an even faster adoption of electric vehicles, yet fuel cost then has to be even higher or electricity prices lower.