The Scenario Report

3. Scenario description and storylines
Table of contents

1. Scope and purpose 2. Introduction 3. Scenario description and storylines 4. Electricity demand 5. Electricity supply 6. Benchmarking 7. Appendix
These Med-TSO 2030 Reference Scenarios explore possible future situations of load and generation, interacting with the Euro-Mediterranean Power system. The aim of these scenarios is to build the path from the present to several possible futures (based on trends in load and generation) to give a robust framework for grid development studies.

3.1 Introduction to the storylines

The Euro-Mediterranean Region is characterized by significant differences in the current and foreseen development of electricity systems. This fact was seen as a call for more awareness of the situation when constructing common and coherent scenarios for all countries. The differences can be observed primarily in the dynamics of the evolution of electricity demand between some countries, which are experiencing regular growth of 2% to 4% per year, and others which have shown stability or even a decrease over the past decade. Notable differences also exist in the design of electricity markets and contrasts in the way of organizing electricity exchanges between countries, from fully integrated and fluid markets to other configurations prioritizing mutual assistance through bilateral contracts, while the infrastructures themselves also offer variable possibilities for exchange.

Finally, and above all, even as the reality of climate change hits our region hard, differences appear in national energy and environmental policies and in the importance given to any regional regulations, the most comprehensive of which concerns European countries. If these disparities also affect the way in which the States approach their commitment vis-à-vis the Paris Agreement, a form of convergence can be found, on the other hand, in the massive development of renewable energies, mainly solar and wind, among all the Mediterranean countries.

All these questions involve a high level of uncertainty that must be taken into account in the methodology and has led to the construction of three contrasting scenarios, which represent potential futures of the Mediterranean electricity system by 2030.

3.1.1 Rationales for defining scenarios for the future of the Mediterranean Power System.

Globally speaking, the scenario definition and storyline building in the Mediterranean context is based on a series of parameters that constitute the main drivers of the scenarios as summarized below in Figure 3-1

Figure 3-1. Most Impacting drivers for the Mediterranean power systems

The analysis of the main factors shows that renewable generation development, the Paris Agreement, technology development and GDP & population are considered the main drivers that reflect the effort to decarbonize the energy system and energy transition in Mediterranean growth.

These drivers are not completely independent from each other and can be gathered in more coherent categories as follows:
  • Macro-Economic Trends:
    The main parameters are GDP growth, population growth, demand forecast, and primary resources price, all of which are used to assess the gross demand forecast. This driver plays a preponderant role in electricity demand evolution in MENA countries, which present and will continue to present (in the coming decade) a strong correlation between economic activity and energy needs. On the other hand, this driver occupies a minor role in European countries, whose electricity consumption has been relatively stable for several years, and whose development depends more on the deployment of energy efficiency policies and a multi-energy approach to the energy transition.
  • Integration of Energy Policies:
    The main parameters are political targets and energy self-sufficiency. These are used to set targets, such as the ambition for GHG/CO2 reduction.
  • Power Supply & RES Development:
    The main parameters are renewable penetration, energy prices, and security of supply. These are used for the energy mix and balancing energy needs from widely distributed renewable sources.
  • Electrification & Energy Efficiency:
    The main parameters are transport, cooling and heating systems and water desalination. These are used to assess the electrification level of sectors like construction, transport, industry, and buildings.

3.1.2 The scenarios at a glance


No breakthrough in the mid-term

Under a moderate growth of GDP and electricity consumption, the Green Transition substantially complies with 2030 national objectives (in European Countries, those set out in the 2019 National Energy and Climate Plans), with international cooperation remaining scarce outside of the European context.

In the Inertial scenario (IN), energy policies stick at local and national levels, which is also due to the persisting contrasts in the power sector regulation among Mediterranean areas and countries. RES development is moderately but steadily progressing, according to national energy policies, without a clear bias between small, distributed plants and large centralized ones. Except for very few countries with strong incentive policies, electric vehicles are also progressing slowly, as well as electrification of other sectors, and energy efficiency measures.


Bottom-up boost of distributed generation and electrical devices at consumer level

Under a marked increase of GDP and of electricity consumption, there is a higher ambition towards a more sustainable energy sector, resulting in intensified RES development (EU climate neutrality in 2050), but with little international cooperation among MENA countries and weak integration of energy policies.

In the Proactive scenario (PR), RES development is driven by local solutions and adapted regulations and/or incentives favourable to widespread investments at consumer and prosumer levels, integrated with residential and building energy management.

Some countries accelerate the adoption of electric vehicles and other end-use electrification, as well as implementing energy efficiency measures. Asymmetries between countries are still relevant. Distributed generation implies less use of grids and thus a lower level of losses; however, interconnections remain substantial due to higher RES penetration.


Top-down boost for supra-national cooperation and utility scale developments

Under a marked increase of GDP and of electricity consumption, there is a higher ambition towards a more sustainable energy sector, resulting in intensified RES development (EU climate neutral in 2050), accompanied by improved cooperation in the Green Transition, in terms of policy integration, financing, industry, and technology transfer.

This occurs across the Mediterranean, with a regional, multilateral approach, through substantial improvements in relation to energy policy integration, regulation harmonization and technical cooperation among grid operators.

In the Mediterranean Ambition scenario (MA), strong RES development is based on utility-scale projects backed by institutional agreements and international cooperation, and through offtake agreements. The abundance of CO2-free energy also contributes to boosting new uses of electricity beyond heating and cooling technologies, and to a moderate push towards energy efficiency. Complementarities between countries are relevant also in this scenario, emphasized by different individual paths in large project deployment.

Both the Proactive and Mediterranean Ambition scenarios aim to reach full decarbonization in 2050 for European countries, with two different and contrasting pathways: Proactive focuses more on renewable development and decentralized options, while Mediterranean Ambition favours a centralized low carbon and RES option.

Table 3-1 shows how the three most impactful drivers and their metrics are qualitatively defined and combined in storylines, as building blocks of three contrasted scenarios. They seek to provide a broad spectrum within which the realistic future is expected to fall with high probability.

It is important to note that the three Med-TSO long-term scenarios do not intend to forecast the future, nor is there any quantification of probability associated with any of the scenarios. The scenarios provide a broad spectrum of potential within which the future will fall, thus supporting the assessment of costs and benefits of interconnection projects.

Inertial Scenario
Proactive Scenario
Mediterranean Ambition Scenario
Macro-Economic Trends
GDP, population growth
+ +
+ +
Integration of energy policies
Energy transition
New demand
+ +
+ + +
V+ + +
Generation, RES development and GHG emission reduction
RES/GHG reduction target achieved
+ +
+ + +
+ + +
Large Scale
New demand - Efficiency
Electric mobility - energy efficiency
+ +
+ +
Table 3-1. Med-TSO scenarios – basic drivers settings
2030 compared to today. + Low growth | ++ Moderate growth | +++ High growth

3.2 Detailed storylines

3.2.1 Inertial scenario

  • Macro-Economic Trends
    This scenario foresees a small growth rate of GDP stemming from a continuous but moderate evolution of the economy in MENA countries. This will result in a modest ongoing growth in electricity consumption, a trend that is expected to continue in the next decade, induced by a moderate development of electricity demand in residential and tertiary sectors, and by a moderate industrial transformation in these countries.
  • Integration of energy policies
    Within the MENA countries, energy policies are essentially initiated at local and national levels. While these policies include common motivations for sustainable development which are set out by each country in commitments linked to the Paris Agreement, their national character nevertheless predominates.

    In this scenario, the quest for energy independence remains a major focus of national energy policies, motivated both by security of supply and by economy. In some countries, this can be reflected in the priority given to local energy resources deemed incompatible with the energy transition, such as coal, but justified by local motivations linked to employment and economic activity.

    The coordination of energy policies between countries, and in particular between the Northern and Southern Mediterranean shores remains weak and is essentially defined by the hydrocarbon supplier / buyer relationship

    A significant difference among countries exists in the regulation of the power sector, which results in sub-optimal use of existing interconnections and persistent difficulty in developing new infrastructures necessary for the energy transition and the integration of renewable energies.

    In the Inertial scenario, the level of development of RES, the commitment in terms of CO2 emission reduction and energy efficiency aim to respect the commitments expressed by the States through their National Energy and Climate Plans (NECP) with regards to the EU countries, and in the (Intended) Nationally Determined Contributions (INDC or NDC) for the other Mediterranean countries.
  • Power supply and RES development
    The development of renewable energies is moderately strong, corresponding to commitments already made and national energy policies.

    In the case of the Southern and Eastern shores of the Mediterranean, renewable development relies on very high potential in terms of wind and/or solar irradiation, which offers an opportunity for a massive RES development. In addition, the substantial reductions in the cost of renewable energy technologies in the last decade reinforces the economic interest in giving renewables a major place in the energy mix.

    Focus is placed on large-scale technologies (utility-scale PV plants and large wind plants). However, despite competitive and abundant resources, the development of renewables remains limited by power system integration constraints, in particular the lack of infrastructure for connection, and the limited deployment of solutions for managing intermittence – namely storage and demand response.

    In parallel with the development of renewable energies, many Mediterranean countries are pursuing a policy of renewing fossil plants (new generations of CCGTs, improvement of efficiency in the electricity generation) and a gradual end to production from coal or oil in favour of natural gas, driven by the exploitation of offshore fields in the Eastern Mediterranean.
  • Electrification
    The adoption of new uses of electricity is generally modest across the MedTSO perimeter. However, the level of development for this driver is very regiondependent (and country-dependent), meaning that a significant contrast is expected between regions and/or countries.

    Accordingly, in general, countries see a slow EV adoption rate, leading to a low energy demand impact in the 2030 time-horizon. This slow EV adoption rate is a result of a purely economy-driven technological merit order, which still favours internal combustion engines over electric engines. However, there are exceptions where the adoption rate is more ambitious, resulting from incentive mechanisms for EV adoption which contribute to overcoming price level differences between EVs and conventional internal combustion vehicles. These exceptions are also resultant of a developed charging infrastructure, which enables a more userfriendly experience.

    The same principles apply to other electrification trends, such as heating and cooling technologies, electrolysis for green hydrogen production, as well as other country or region-specific technologies (both consumer and industry-related).

    The adoption of energy efficiency measures is modest due to the initial Capex costs associated with such measures (e.g., insulation of buildings). Asymmetries between countries and regions are noticeable, resulting in different levels of impact of efficiency measures across the Mediterranean Region. In some countries, the energy efficiency measures are likely to offset the new demand created by new uses of electricity, such as the EV.

3.2.2 Proactive scenario

  • Macro-Economic Trends
    This scenario assumes that following a higher economic development in the Mediterranean countries, moderately strong GDP growth can be expected. The effect of this driver on power demand differs greatly between mature and developing countries. This will result in a higher growth rate of electricity consumption compared to the Inertial scenario for countries in which there is a strong correlation between economic evolution and electricity demand.
  • Integration of energy policies
    As in the Inertial scenario, the energy policies in the Proactive scenario remain essentially initiated at local and national levels. These policies include common motivations for sustainable development, which are set out by each country in commitments linked to the Paris Agreement, yet their national character predominates.

    However, driven in Europe by a strong political will and in the other Mediterranean countries by favourable economic conditions, the evolution to a more sustainable energy sector is intensified.

    The limitations induced by the weak integration of energy policies and low international cooperation remain present and curb ambitions for the Mediterranean countries

    For EU countries, the ambitious targets of the Clean Energy Package will aim at reducing GHG emissions by 55% by 2030 and at achieving carbon neutrality by 2050.

    For the other Mediterranean countries, where no such binding mandates are in place, the energy transition pace relies on the voluntary development of international cooperation and integration of energy policies at regional level.
  • Power supply and RES development
    The development of renewable energies benefits from a decentralized approach, which brings out local solutions favourable to investment as well as a prosumer-based approach, supporting integration of intermittent production into the power system.

    As an example, the electric power wheeling scheme is deployed to encourage large consumers to develop renewable energy for self-consumption, with a view to reducing energy costs and increasing competitiveness. The net metering scheme is focused on the development of renewable energy in the Mediterranean context, mainly solar PV, for all metered consumers to cover their own consumption. Local optimization also includes the development of battery storage solutions at distribution level and EV charging.
    On the financing side, a public package / guarantee system incentivizes financial institutions and national banking establishments to offer credit facilities with reduced interest rates to support renewable energy and energy efficiency initiatives.

    The technical challenges remain significant, with local solutions failing to offer a satisfactory answer to the difficulties induced, particularly those generated by the lack of infrastructure for connection, and the limited deployment of solutions for managing intermittency, foremost among which are interconnections.
  • Electrification
    Overall, the EV adoption rate is moderately strong in the Mediterranean perimeter, presenting some asymmetries between countries/regions. In some countries, EV adoption incentive policies coupled with deployment of a charging infrastructure in line with demand, and the possibility of smart charging, lead to a robust adoption rate, creating a meaningful impact on demand in the 2030 time-horizon.

    Besides EV adoption, the electrification of other domestic and industrial energy uses is modest, except for some countries where space heating (e.g., heat-pumps) adds to the EV in creating an impactful new demand. A push for flexible solutions for sector coupling, as is the case of power-to-gas, is also a novelty in some countries, leading to a new use of electricity through electrolysis.

    Overall, there is a moderately strong push towards energy efficiency. Nevertheless, this effort is evident only in some countries, which show a strong commitment towards energy efficiency measures such as house/building insulation and the adoption of electricity-based efficient technologies (e.g., heat pumps, EVs). It is worth noting that, in the Proactive scenario, the development of distributed generation, coupled with small-scale local storage solutions, leads to a lower dependence on grids, resulting in lower grid losses and ultimately generating a positive effect on energy efficiency.

3.2.3 Mediterranean Ambition Scenario

  • Macro-Economic Trends
    As in the Proactive scenario, the Mediterranean Ambition scenario implies that following higher economic development in the Mediterranean countries, moderately strong GDP growth is expected. The effect on power demand of this driver is very different in mature vs developing countries. This will result in a higher growth rate of electricity consumption compared to the Inertial scenario for countries in which there is a strong correlation between economic evolution and electricity demand.
  • Integration of energy policies
    The Mediterranean Ambition scenario introduces a major change in energy policy integration, the coordination of regulations, and technical cooperation. It factors in the implementation of an ambitious policy agenda for Europe in the Mediterranean, but also of enhanced cooperation between the Mediterranean countries at regional level.

    In terms of infrastructure, efforts are reflected in the implementation of investments intended to mitigate obstacles to the energy transition, by strengthening interconnections, but also through increased support for technology transfer.

    In MENA countries, convergence in the regulation of electrical systems is underway to promote their performance and ensure optimal use of infrastructure.

    International development finance institutions actively participate in the financing of utility-scale renewable energy projects.

    While ensuring national interests remains essential in determining energy policies, such as those concerning security of supply and protection of employment and economic interests, multilateral cooperation can leverage energy complementarities between countries. This cooperation includes multiple aspects, including joint investments, technology transfer, training programmes and the creation of joint competence centres. Its benefit is maximized with the involvement of the local renewable energy industry, thus contributing to job creation and wider socioeconomic benefits.

    For EU countries, the policy framework is the same as that of the Proactive scenario, i.e., compliance with the European Green Deal (55% CO2 reduction in 2030 and full decarbonization in 2050).
  • Power supply and RES development
    In this scenario, priority is given to decarbonization of energy supply with a focus on large-scale technologies.

    Addressing the challenge of variable RES integration requires a wide range of actions to improve overall system flexibility, including strong development of transmission and distribution infrastructure, deployment of battery and pumpedhydro storage, promotion of demand-side management, and incentivizing the electrification of end-uses.

    The technologies associated with utility-scale PV and wind plants enable the provision of a wide range of grid services, including voltage and frequency control, renewable smoothing, arbitrage, curtailment management, and ancillary services. Coordinated power system planning offers opportunities to match demand and supply in an optimum manner that reduces overall system costs and implies incremental integration infrastructure investment.
  • Electrification
    There is a strong growth of new demand across the Mediterranean Region, despite the persistence of certain asymmetries between countries. The adoption of EVs is strong, except in countries in which the national policies do not create enough incentives to promote this transition and where the development of charging infrastructure is still not aligned with (or ahead of) technological needs.

    There is also a fast deployment of climatization technologies, such as heat pumps and air conditioning for residential and tertiary sector heating, leading to new demand. The production of hydrogen through electrolysis further increases demand for clean electricity.

    Overall, there is a moderately strong push towards energy efficiency. This effort is more evident in some countries, which show a strong commitment towards energy efficiency measures such as house/building insulation and the adoption of electricity-based efficient technologies (e.g., heat pumps, EVs).
Inertial Scenario
Proactive Scenario
Mediterranean Ambition Scenario
Macro-Economic Trends
GDP/Population growth.
Low GDP growth rate, continuous but moderate evolution of the economy resulting in modest ongoing growth in electricity consumption.
Increase in GDP growth rate compared to present trends, leading to a higher growth rate of electricity consumption.
Integration of energy policies
Green transition and Paris Agreement, decarbonization target achievement.
Green transition deemed to comply with current national objectives (NECP, NDP). Low international cooperation outside of Europe.
For MENA countries, little international cooperation, but increased ambitions in terms of RES development.
For MENA countries, improved cooperation in the green transition (policy integration, financing, industry, and technology transfer).
For EU countries, at least a 55% CO2 emissions reduction in 2030, climate neutral in 2050.
Regional regulation and/ or Mediterranean integration; energy independence.
Energy policies essentially initiated at a local and national level. Significant persisting contrasts among countries in power sector regulation.
Intensified evolution towards a more sustainable energy sector, despite remaining limitations induced by weak energy integration policies and little.
Enhanced cooperation between the Mediterranean countries at regional level. Major change in energy policy integration, regulation coordination and technical cooperation.
Power Supply, RES Development
RES development rate.
Moderately strong RES development, corresponding to commitments already made and national energy policies
RES development benefits from a decentralized approach bringing local solutions favourable to investment and integration.
Strong RES development benefiting from international cooperation on large projects backed by institutional agreements.
Distributed [vs Centralized] technologies.
Distributed [vs Centralized] technologies.
Focus placed on decentralized projects, mostly at consumer level and on adapted regulations/incentives.
Focus placed on largescale renewable and storage projects and related financing/ business models.
New Demand and Energy Efficiency
Electric mobility.
Modest adoption of EVs with no significant impact in demand. Some exceptions are observed in countries with stronger incentive policies.
Moderately strong EV adoption. Asymmetries are observed between countries, some of which demonstrate a strong adoption rate, leading to a relevant impact on demand.
Strong EV adoption, leading to a relevant impact in demand. Exceptions are countries which have not implemented incentives mechanisms and did promote the deployment of a charging infrastructure.
Other electrification trends.
Modest electrification trend. Exceptions include climatization technologies in some countries and rare cases of new industrial uses of electricity.
Moderately strong electrification trend. Exceptions include heating and cooling technologies in some countries and cases of new industrial uses of electricity
Relevant deployment of new uses of electricity. This includes residential and tertiary heating and cooling technologies, as well as other new industrial uses of electricity.
Energy efficiency
Modest adoption of energy efficiency measures, due to the associated investment costs. Asymmetries exist across the Mediterranean Region.
Moderately strong push towards energy efficiency. Asymmetries between countries are relevant. Distributed generation may imply lower use of grids and therefore, lower losses.
Moderately strong push towards energy efficiency. Asymmetries between countries are relevant, with some showing a greater commitment towards energy efficiency measures (building insulation, efficient climatization, etc.).
Table 3-2. Med-TSO scenarios' full drivers' settings

3.3 Other assumptions

The scenario building process also includes the determination of common technical parameters:
  • The principle of an efficient day-ahead market, i.e., where electricity flows from a lower price zone to a higher price zone, regardless of the difference in price, and independently for each hour of the day.
  • The principle of equal fossil fuel wholesale prices across all Euro-Mediterranean countries. While several countries in the Region are – or plan to become – producers and exporters of natural gas, sales mechanisms at regulated prices may exist within such countries (generally a low price that benefits the residential consumers), which can be qualified as subsidies. However, thanks to the adopted principle of equality in fuel prices, competition between thermal power plants, and therefore the international electricity exchanges which result from it, are based solely on the type of fuel and on the technical performance (efficiency) of each plant. Correct economic assessment must consider the opportunity cost of the fuels, which correspond to international market prices where they exist, as is the case for oil and gas products.
  • The principle of an economic value for CO2 emissions resulting from electricity generation, common to all Mediterranean countries, which, despite the absence of a shared regulation, ensures the integrity of regional mechanisms for controlling greenhouse gases emissions.

3.3.1 Commodity and CO2 emissions prices

Table 3-3 presents the fuel and commodity prices adopted by Med-TSO for modelling the Euro-Mediterranean Power System.

Commodity (2030)
Inertial Scenario
Proactive Scenario
Mediterranean Ambition Scenario
Fuel prices €/net GJ
Hard coal
Light oil
Heavy oil
Oil shale
Price (€/net GJ)
Share in Europe
Share in MENA
€ / kg
€ per ton CO2
Table 3-3. Commodity prices.

The operation and evolution of the electricity system will increasingly depend on other sectors. As a result, it is necessary to model its interaction with other sectors. Electrolyzers are modelled based on the use of hydrogen for capturing a wide range of interactions between electricity and hydrogen systems, where Steam Methane Reforming (SMR) is used as a generic backup at a price equivalent to green hydrogen. In the merit order, the electrolyzer activation price stays between nuclear and CCGT generation prices. This ensures that low-carbon hydrogen is only produced from electricity in periods of renewable and nuclear marginality, and that, on the other hand, the operation of electrolyzers does not induce an increase in fossil thermal production.

3.3.2 How Med-TSO scenarios are linked with other scenarios

Power system modelling aims to represent all the interconnected countries. For the Euro-Mediterranean Power system, there is therefore a key issue in applying these assumptions to all countries in the perimeter of ENTSO-E, for each of the three scenarios. Consistency is facilitated because the scenario building methodology used by Med-TSO is like that adopted in ENTSO-E, in particular for the scenarios proposed in its Ten-Year Network Development Plan (TYNDP 2022).

The principle is therefore to examine to what extent these drivers coincide and to proceed with the coupling of the scenarios, favouring coherence of the drivers to the greatest possible extent.

Figure 3-2. Adopted matching for Med-TSO and ENTSO-E TYNDP2022 scenarios

Following a driver-based method, the matching of Med-TSO scenarios with the most similar ENTSO-E scenarios for European countries is presented in Figure 3-2.

The scenarios presented in this report were built collectively by the members of Med-TSO based on the context and prospects for the evolution of electricity systems in Mediterranean countries. Assuming this common framework, data collection is performed following a bottom-up approach for the three scenarios.

The following Mediterranean countries have not directly contributed to the data collection: Israel, Syria, and Lebanon. For these countries, detailed data were collected based on public documents, for the three scenarios, while respecting their definition. It is therefore expected that the lack of a direct contribution for these countries does not weaken the collective quality and accuracy of the scenarios.

3.3.2 Modelling

The scenario-building process provides Med-TSO members with a common framework aiming to quantify national assumptions for the load and generation fleet, for each MedTSO 2030 scenario. Due to the development of renewable energy and considering all the hazards impacting the load and generation fleet, market studies are strongly designed in a probabilistic approach, focusing on weather conditions (wind, temperature, insulation, etc.) and using available weather databases.

The market model is based on economic optimization of the overall generation cost of the full Euro-Mediterranean Power System. It does not consider the network except for international interconnection exchange capacities, and factors in internal constraint, where relevant.

The market simulator used in the scope of this study by Med-TSO members is ANTARES, a sequential ‘Monte-Carlo’ multi-area simulator developed by RTE, the French TSO. Its purpose is to assess generation adequacy problems and economic efficiency issues.

The implementation of the market model facilitates a global and detailed vision of the Mediterranean Power System’s behaviour for each of the scenarios through many indicators and physical quantities, at hourly time steps, and on average, over one year: power and energy produced by each type of generation plant for each country, border exchanges, marginal production price, national balance, unsupplied energy expectation, RES curtailment, and CO2 emissions.

3.2.4 Presentation

All the results are presented for the Mediterranean countries perimeter, which corresponds to all the countries of Med-TSO members, plus Bosnia Herzegovina, Malta and Syria, as shown in Figure 3-2. The distribution of Mediterranean countries in subregions is presented in Figure 3-2.

Figure 3-3. Mediterranean countries

Figure 3-4. Distribution of Mediterranean countries in sub-regions.

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