Sustainable Automobile Transport

Sustainable Automobile Transport

Shaping Climate Change Policy

ESRI Studies Series on the Environment

Lisa Ryan and Hal Turton

Transport, and in particular road transport, represents a significant global threat to long-term sustainable development, and is one of the fastest-growing consumers of final energy and sources of greenhouse gas emissions. In this book, long-term energy–economy–environment scenarios are used to identify the key technological developments required to address the challenges passenger car transport poses to climate change mitigation and energy security. It also considers possible targets for policy support and examines some of the elements that contribute to the significant levels of uncertainty – particularly social and political conditions. The book then builds on this long-term scenario analysis with a broad review of recent empirical examples of relevant policy implementation to identify near-term options for the passenger transportation sector which may promote a shift towards a more sustainable transport system over the longer term.

Chapter 6: Alternative Scenarios of a Future Transport System

Lisa Ryan and Hal Turton

Subjects: asian studies, asian economics, economics and finance, asian economics, transport, environment, asian environment, climate change, environmental sociology, transport, urban and regional studies, transport

Extract

Adopting new technologies and mobilizing alternative resources has the potential to facilitate the development of a sustainable energy system. Chapter 5 examined and demonstrated the potential of new technologies and fuels to deliver a sustainable transport system, along with a low-emissions global energy system. However, this was only an assessment of technical potential, rather than commercial potential. In this current chapter we examine whether current market drivers alone are sufficient to achieve such a sustainable energy system and, where they fall short, identify possible key targets for policy support to promote sustainable development in the transport sector. 6.1 ENERGY AND TRANSPORT SYSTEM DEVELOPMENT IN THE ABSENCE OF SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT OBJECTIVES We present here another scenario of the transport sector, again based on the economic, social and transport demand developments described in Chapter 2. The main point of divergence, however, is that we assume that some aspects of sustainability – in particular greenhouse gas emission abatement and strategic management of resource depletion – are not pursued. This assumption means that many key current policy drivers of energy system development are excluded, including current (and future) climate change mitigation policies, efforts to promote energy security and some aspects of technology development (such as R&D). Accordingly, it is not appropriate to refer to this as a ‘business-as-usual’ scenario, and it is more correctly described as a ‘no-policy’ scenario. This scenario helps us to understand the type of energy and transport system that may emerge in the absence of policy intervention, thereby illustrating...

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