MARKAL is a generic model tailored by the input data to represent the evolution over a period of usually 40 to 50 years of a specific energy system at the national, regional, state or province, or community level.

The basic components in a MARKAL model are specific types of energy or emission control technologies. Each is represented quantitatively by a set of performance and cost characteristics. A menu of both existing and future technologies is input to the model. Both the supply and demand sides are integrated, so that one side responds automatically to changes in the other. The model selects that combination of technologies that minimizes total energy system cost.

Some uses of MARKAL:

  • to identify least-cost energy systems
  • to identify cost-effective responses to restrictions on emissions
  • to perform prospective analysis of long-term energy balances under different scenarios
  • to evaluate new technologies and priorities for R&D
  • to evaluate the effects of regulations, taxes, and subsidies
  • to project inventories of greenhouse gas emissions to estimate the value of regional cooperation

Published August 3, 2012

Contact: Gerd Kjølle, SINTEF Energy Research