Transitions to Alternative Vehicles and Fuels

National Research Council

[Green Car Congress] Light-duty vehicles (LDVs) in the US may be able to reduce petroleum use by 50% by 2030, and by 80% by 2050; and reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 80% by 2050, according to the newly published results of a two-year study by a committee convened by the National Research Council.

Achieving those goals will will be difficult—but not impossible to meet…

noted Douglas M. Chapin, principal of MPR Associates, and chair of the committee that wrote the report.

To reach the 2050 goals for reducing petroleum use and greenhouse gases, vehicles must become dramatically more efficient, regardless of how they are powered. In addition, alternative fuels to petroleum must be readily available, cost-effective and produced with low emissions of greenhouse gases. Such a transition will be costly and require several decades.

The committee’s model calculations, while exploratory and highly uncertain, indicate that the benefits of making the transition, i.e. energy cost savings, improved vehicle technologies, and reductions in petroleum use and greenhouse gas emissions, exceed the additional costs of the transition over and above what the market is willing to do voluntarily.

—Douglas M. Chapin



One thought on “Transitions to Alternative Vehicles and Fuels

  1. Too bad that the NAP did not seriously considered methanol fuel that could fuel a large portion of the existing fleet and can be made from natural gas, municipal trash, biomass and even from CO2 from the atmosphere.

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