Carbon Emissions in the Passenger Transport Sector: Technology and Alternative Fuels

Schaefer, A. (1992). Carbon Emissions in the Passenger Transport Sector: Technology and Alternative Fuels. IIASA Working Paper. IIASA, Laxenburg, Austria: WP-92-004

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This report analyzes technological options for reducing carbon dioxide emissions for passenger transport. The analysis covers the major modes including aircraft, automobiles and railways and it also covers the energy supply chains that deliver transportation fuels. Thus, the mitigation and efficiency improvement potentials are assessed by the examination of whole energy and emission chains from raw material extraction through end-use. The major options considered in the paper for mitigation of carbon dioxide emissions associated with passenger transport include both the efficiency improvements of the vehicles and the whole energy and transport system and the use of alternative fuels with lower specific carbon content and/or lower carbon emissions.

Moreover, some aspects of consumer's behavior are also considered such as load factors and occupancy of vehicles. The analysis identifies a large carbon emissions reduction potential in passenger transport by both technological measures and changes in consumer's behavior. In general, alternative fuels such as alcohols have on balance a limited if any real advantage over gasoline and diesel vehicles, while the electric propulsion is identified to have the largest reduction potential irrespective of whether electricity is generated by a "conventional" power plant mix or by alternative energy sources without any carbon emissions. In some cases that also leads to an interesting result that for short-range trips highly efficient individual transport modes such as the well-designed electric cars might have the best performance even when compared to public transport systems with respect to both carbon emissions and energy use.

Item Type: Monograph (IIASA Working Paper)
Research Programs: Environmentally Compatible Energy Strategies (ECS)
Depositing User: IIASA Import
Date Deposited: 15 Jan 2016 02:02
Last Modified: 27 Aug 2021 17:14

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