Energy Systems of the Future

Initiative of the German Academies of Sciences

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This is what the future could look like in 2050: Electricity is mainly generated from wind and solar power. Cars are fuelled with electricity or hydrogen. Buildings are so well insulated that they no longer require heating.

How do we get there? What remains to be explored? And how is the transition towards a more sustainable energy supply to be financed? The Academies’ Project “Energy Systems of the Future” provides answers to these questions.

Current issues


Climate targets can only be achieved through cross-sectoral solutions

Only with an explicit strategic change to more coupling of the sectors can targets be achieved over the long-term, according to the Academies’ Project “Energy Systems of the Future” (ESYS). In the position paper published today, it is asked for a more robust interlinking of the electricity, heat and transport sectors and the integration of more renewables into the system.

Position Paper

Raw materials for the energy transition. Securing a reliable and sustainable supply

The supply of metals and energy products depends on various factors, i.e. how raw material prices develop, or how transparent and accessible the markets are. The position paper describes how Germany can become more independent of raw material imports and what measures can help to secure the supply in the long term.


Resilience: The security concept of the future

The energy system is becoming increasingly interconnected, digitalised and decentralised. This makes it more flexible, but also more vulnerable. Resilient energy systems remain functional even in the case of attacks and disturbances.

„Its specific aim, broad approach and structural conception make the Academies’ Project ESYS unique in the field of science-based policy advice. “

Jörg Hacker
President of the German Academy of Sciences Leopoldina

„The energy transition must be implemented in close cooperation with the humanities. Thus, we can better understand the consequences that ensue for the population and ensure that the transition is realised in a socially sustainable way.“

Hanns Hatt
President of the Union of German Academies

„ESYS creates interfaces between different disciplines and stakeholders in order to develop systemic answers to the challenges coming with the energy transition. “

Reinhard F. Hüttl
acatech vice president