Dynamics of Transport and Energy Systems. History of Development and a Scenario for the Future

Grubler A, Nakicenovic N, & Schaefer A (1992). Dynamics of Transport and Energy Systems. History of Development and a Scenario for the Future. IIASA Research Report (Reprint). IIASA, Laxenburg, Austria: RR-93-019. Reprinted from Energy and Life, Proceedings of the 15th WEC Congress, Madrid, 20-25 September 1992

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Abstract

This report analyzes the historical development of transport systems from canals to railroads, from horse-driven carriages to automobiles, and more recently to air transportation and new forms of high-speed ground transportation. The historically observed heterogeneity in the timing, duration, and adoption intensity of the diffusion of individual transport technologies is then used to sketch a scenario of energy demand, and resulting carbon emissions from the passenger transport sector.

In this scenario, automobile and air transport in the industrialized countries approaches saturation in the next two to three decades. For developing countries, however, the scenario suggests that despite their high growth potential, they may not necessarily mimic the high adoption intensity of individual transport modes prevailing in the industrialized countries. Combined with a continuation of historical rates of efficiency improvements, transportation energy demand and resulting carbon emissions could level off after the year 2000. Carbon emissions could be reduced significantly thereafter through the penetration of electric- and hydrogen-powered vehicles in the industrialized countries. Such a scenario illustrates a possible future pathway contrasting conventional wisdom and giving some indication of the direction and time scale of technology and transport policy actions required to reconcile growing mobility with global environmental concerns.

Item Type: Monograph (IIASA Research Report (Reprint))
Research Programs: Environmentally Compatible Energy Strategies (ECS)
Depositing User: IIASA Import
Date Deposited: 15 Jan 2016 02:01
Last Modified: 19 Jul 2016 07:14
URI: http://pure.iiasa.ac.at/3591

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