Case study

International 2050 Pathways Partnership and Global Calculator

How the International Climate Fund (ICF) is assisting developing countries to draw up their own low-carbon development plans.

DECC London HQ - 3 Whitehall Place
DECC London HQ - 3 Whitehall Place


The International 2050 Pathways Partnership and Global calculator programme has two focuses; assisting ten developing country governments to build 2050 Calculator models to support their low carbon planning, and developing the Global Calculator to improve the debate around what the 2°C target means and how we can reach it.

Theme: Mitigation

Through engaging in a dialogue around the 2050 calculator, countries are encouraged to explore all possible pathways for low carbon development in a transparent and simple way. The models are published online, meaning they can then be used to increase and improve dialogue on this subject across business, civil society and the general public. The 2050 calculator has already been used to influence low carbon plans in the UK and Belgium.


These projects seek to remedy the lack of user friendly, accessible evidence, at country and global levels on: *the tangible, aspirational vision for life in a two degree world, for example, how much meat and crops will the average person be able to consume?; *the detrimental impacts of not tackling climate change, for example, the ability to answer questions around the consequences of following a particular carbon pathway, and; *the costs, benefits and trade-offs of different technologies and behaviour change options, and how they interact.

What is being done?

The International 2050 Pathways Partnership is comprised of two projects:

2050 Pathways - £1.5 million over 2012-15 providing capacity building assistance to 10 developing countries, involving partnerships between national ministries (including South Africa, Brazil, and India, among others). By providing analytically robust, transparent and accessible evidence about their mitigation potential, these will support countries to draw up their own low-carbon development plans and to improve the public debate on energy and climate change issues.

Global Calculator - £550,000 over 2012-14 (with an additional £480,000 from Climate-KIC) to develop a 2050 Calculator model covering the whole world that allows users to explore ways to prevent dangerous climate change and what the 2°C target really means. Built by a coalition of organisations (including the Chinese Government’s Energy Research Institute and the World Resources Institute in America) and led by DECC, the tool was launched in January 2015 and received widespread media coverage in the UK and China. The website has received 25,000 hits so far. Over 2015, DECC and its partners will work to increase awareness and usage of the tool around the world, with target audiences of businesses, NGOs, and policy makers.

Expected Results

So far eight countries have published working energy 2050 Calculator models, and two others are close to publishing. Work is ongoing to improve the models, use them in the policy making process, and increase awareness about them amongst stakeholders and the general public.

Published 14 January 2013
Last updated 18 November 2015 + show all updates
  1. Second annual reviews for the International 2050 Pathways Partnership and Global Calculator published.
  2. First published.