The PRIMES energy model

Simulation of energy supply and demand

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The PRIMES model simulates the response of energy consumers and the energy supply systems to different pathways of economic development and exogenous constraints.

Model characteristics

PRIMES is a modelling system that simulates a market equilibrium solution for energy supply and demand in the European Union (EU) member states. The model determines the equilibrium by finding the prices of each energy form such that the quantity producers find best to supply match the quantity consumers wish to use. The equilibrium is static (within each time period) but repeated in a time-forward path, under dynamic relationships. The model is behavioural but also represent in an explicit and detailed way the available energy demand and supply technologies and pollution abatement technologies. The system reflects considerations about market economics, industry structure, energy /environmental policies and regulation. These are conceived so as to influence market behaviour of energy system agents. The modular structure of PRIMES reflects a distribution of decision making among agents that decide individually about their supply, demand, combined supply and demand, and prices. Then the market integrating part of PRIMES simulates market clearing.

Typical features and results

A fundamental assumption in PRIMES is that producers and consumers both respond to changes in price. The factors determining the demand for and the supply of each fuel are analysed and represented, so they form the demand and/or supply behaviour of the agents. Through an iterative process, the model determines the economic equilibrium for each fuel market. Price-driven equilibrium is considered in all energy and environment markets, including Europe-wide clearing of oil and gas markets, as well as Europe-wide networks, such as the Europe-wide power grid and natural gas network.

PRIMES can support policy analysis in the following fields:

Data sources

Input from other EC4MACS models

Output to other EC4MACS models


A detailed description of the GAINS model can be found in Amann et al. (2011) and

Developed by

National Technical University AthensĀ