Energy Prices and Land Use

Status: Project completed
End of project period: 31.3.2014



Both „housing” and „mobility” are essential land use factors interacting with people’s everyday life. German households spend almost half of their income to satisfy these needs.

The individual design of both areas (“Where to live?”, “How to live?”, “How much heat do I need?”, “How far do I drive?”, “Which vehicle?”, “How often do I drive?”) depends, apart from various parameters, mainly on two influencing factors: energy-price plus spatial and settlement structure. Within the €LAN-project energy prices are considered as total energy prices of households including electricity and heating as well as energy for traffic and transport.

One major outcome of recent studies is the expected growth of energy prices over upcoming decades. In 2008, a short period of high energy prices exemplified immediate impact on land use as a reaction by both private households and politics at various levels and sectors. The policy fell under pressure to react in a adequate manner. But how can sustainable solutions be achieved? Through multi-billion bailouts? Via innovation-forcing acceleration programs for adaption? By means of classical tools of sustainable settlement planning? And what about political leeway?

Within the project a methodical instrument was developed and tested for implementation to other regions and issues of land management (e.g. climate protection policy, demographical change, economical trends). It combines an integrated transport and land use model with a political
experimental game, linked with iterative loopings over a determined period.