Perspectives from the Transportation Energy Futures Project

Austin Brown, Laura Vimmerstedt

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


The TEF project concluded that energy efficiency technologies and renewable energy resource use could attain deep GHG abatement and petroleum reductions, while reducing fuel costs, but requirements for this type of future would include long-term infrastructure investment and substantial market uptake of both advanced vehicle technologies (to allow use of electricity and hydrogen) and advanced biofuels. Direct use of renewable resources (biofuels), combined with the use of energy carriers such as electricity and hydrogen made from renewable resources have the potential lead to a transportation energy future beyond petroleum that features lower fuel carbon content and a more varied energy resource base compared to today's system. Figure 2 below shows the combined impact on transportation petroleum use implied by the combined potential identified in each paper. TEF was completed in parallel with several other relevant major studies. A recent National Petroleum Council report12 and the latest Annual Energy Outlook from the U.S. Energy Information Agency (EIA)13 imply that dramatic change to the transportation system was unlikely given their technology cost and performance estimates, and assuming no new policies are implemented. Since then, a major National Academies study of LDV options14, ongoing analysis by UC Davis' Institute for Transportation Studies15, and TEF have identified enormous upside potential for advanced technologies and low-emission strategies, including assessment of environmental implications beyond GHG emissions. Future work will continue to address consequences and challenges in reaching a low-carbon transportation system, outlined by TEF and other studies.

Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages8
StatePublished - 2014
EventClimate Change Conference 2013: Impacts, Policy and Regulation - Washington, United States
Duration: 9 Sep 201311 Sep 2013


ConferenceClimate Change Conference 2013: Impacts, Policy and Regulation
Country/TerritoryUnited States

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/CP-6A20-59023


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