Click here to close now.


News Feed Item

Research Investigates How to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Transportation

Mineta NTRC's free report recommends aggressive technology policies and increases in travel costs

SAN JOSE, Calif., March 25, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions must be reduced by 50-80 percent by 2050 to limit a global temperature increase of 2 degrees Celsius (or 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit).  With vehicles as one of the prime producers, how can the transportation sector address that hurdle? The Mineta National Transit Research Consortium (MNTRC) has just published the peer-reviewed Transportation Futures: Policy Scenarios for Achieving Greenhouse Gas Reduction Targets, which analyzes three possible scenarios. Authored by Andrew I. Kay, MCRP; Robert B. Noland, PhD; and Caroline J. Rodier, PhD, the report is available at no charge and no registration from

"It's generally accepted that these temperature changes can negatively affect global food supplies, biological health, water quality, and other necessities of life," said Mr. Kay. "Achieving GHG reductions of this magnitude in the transportation sector is a challenge and requires a multitude of policies and technology options. In particular, medium- and heavy-duty vehicles require additional fuel or technology-based GHG reductions. While existing and upcoming regulations deliver certain benefits, it is unlikely that they will be sufficient to meet the GHG reduction goals."

The research presented in the report analyzes three policy scenarios: changes in the perceived price of travel, land-use intensification, and increases in transit. To forecast the changes from these scenarios, the California activity-based travel demand model was used. This is a statewide model that covers all the regions of California, but they also reasonably represent the US. From this model a variety of travel-demand elasticity estimates were derived for each policy option. These were then applied to forecasts of future vehicle miles of travel from the VISION model while also accounting for potential error bands inherent in the modeling process.

The research results provide useful information for understanding the effectiveness of alternative policies and any additional regulatory policies that might be necessary to close the gap. Of the three travel demand management policies analyzed, only the pricing policy comes close to achieving the 50 percent emission reduction target over the period from 2000-2040, and this assumes a two-fold increase in the price of driving and the highest range of elasticity estimates from the model. Transit and land-use policies provide only minor reductions in emissions. Overall, this analysis suggests that reductions of about 20-40 percent – in addition to those provided through demand management strategies – may be necessary to meet aggressive mitigation goals.

Medium- and heavy-duty vehicles, primarily freight traffic, achieve only small reductions in emissions even with the pricing scenarios. Transit and land-use policies would have little effect on freight emissions. This suggests that further technological improvements far beyond current regulations will be required to reduce emissions from these vehicles.

"These results are consistent with other gap analyses that have been conducted," said Dr. Rodier. "Most studies conclude that aggressive technology policies and reductions in travel demand are necessary to achieve large reductions in transportation GHG emissions. This study reveals a potential gap, particularly in emissions from medium- and heavy-duty trucks, without further regulatory action. The need to increase the price of travel to reduce demand is also critical if the transportation sector is to contribute to global efforts to help stabilize temperatures."

The 56-page report includes six figures and seven tables. Download at no cost and no registration from

ABOUT THE INVESTIGATORS (alphabetical order)
Andrew I. Kay, MCRP, is a research manager at the Alan M. Voorhees Transportation Center at Rutgers University. He received his Master of City and Regional Planning degree from the Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy at Rutgers in 2010, along with a Certificate of Transportation Studies. He also holds a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy from the New College of Florida.

Robert B. Noland, PhD, is a professor at the Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy and serves as the director of the Alan M. Voorhees Transportation Center, both at Rutgers University. He received his Ph.D. in Energy Management and Environmental Policy from the University of Pennsylvania.

Caroline Rodier, PhD, is a research associate at the Mineta Transportation Institute and Associate Director of the Urban Land Use and Transportation Center at the University of California, Davis. She holds a PhD in ecology and an MS in community development from the University of California, Davis, and a BA in US history from Barnard College, Columbia University.

The Mineta National Transit Research Consortium (MNTRC) is composed of nine university transportation centers led by the Mineta Transportation Institute at San Jose State University. The Consortium was organized in January 2012 after winning a competition sponsored by the US Department of Transportation (DOT) to create consortia tasked with "Delivering Solutions that Improve Public Transportation." Member universities include Bowling Green State University, Grand Valley State University, Howard University, Penn State University, Rutgers University, San Jose State University, University of Detroit Mercy, University of Nevada Las Vegas, and University of Toledo. Visit

MTI conducts research, education, and information transfer programs focusing on surface transportation policy and management issues, especially related to transit. MTI was established by Congress in 1991 as part of the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act and won national re-designation competitions in 2002, 2006 and 2011. The Institute is funded by Congress through the US DOT Research and Innovative Technology Administration, by the California Legislature through Caltrans, and public and private grants. In 2006 the US Department of Homeland Security selected MTI as a National Transportation Security Center of Excellence. The internationally respected members of the MTI Board of Trustees represent all major surface transportation modes. MTI is the lead institute for the Mineta National Transit Research Consortium, an affiliation of nine university transportation research centers. MTI is affiliated with San Jose (CA) State University's College of Business. Visit

Contact: Donna Maurillo
MTI Communications Director
831-234-4009 (mobile)
donna.maurillo (at)

SOURCE Mineta National Transit Research Consortium

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
There are many considerations when moving applications from on-premise to cloud. It is critical to understand the benefits and also challenges of this migration. A successful migration will result in lower Total Cost of Ownership, yet offer the same or higher level of robustness. Migration to cloud shifts computing resources from your data center, which can yield significant advantages provided that the cloud vendor an offer enterprise-grade quality for your application.
The Internet of Everything is re-shaping technology trends–moving away from “request/response” architecture to an “always-on” Streaming Web where data is in constant motion and secure, reliable communication is an absolute necessity. As more and more THINGS go online, the challenges that developers will need to address will only increase exponentially. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Todd Greene, Founder & CEO of PubNub, will explore the current state of IoT connectivity and review key trends an...
Today air travel is a minefield of delays, hassles and customer disappointment. Airlines struggle to revitalize the experience. GE and M2Mi will demonstrate practical examples of how IoT solutions are helping airlines bring back personalization, reduce trip time and improve reliability. In their session at @ThingsExpo, Shyam Varan Nath, Principal Architect with GE, and Dr. Sarah Cooper, M2Mi's VP Business Development and Engineering, will explore the IoT cloud-based platform technologies driv...
Achim Weiss is Chief Executive Officer and co-founder of ProfitBricks. In 1995, he broke off his studies to co-found the web hosting company "Schlund+Partner." The company "Schlund+Partner" later became the 1&1 web hosting product line. From 1995 to 2008, he was the technical director for several important projects: the largest web hosting platform in the world, the second largest DSL platform, a video on-demand delivery network, the largest eMail backend in Europe, and a universal billing syste...
Containers have changed the mind of IT in DevOps. They enable developers to work with dev, test, stage and production environments identically. Containers provide the right abstraction for microservices and many cloud platforms have integrated them into deployment pipelines. DevOps and Containers together help companies to achieve their business goals faster and more effectively.
The buzz continues for cloud, data analytics and the Internet of Things (IoT) and their collective impact across all industries. But a new conversation is emerging - how do companies use industry disruption and technology enablers to lead in markets undergoing change, uncertainty and ambiguity? Organizations of all sizes need to evolve and transform, often under massive pressure, as industry lines blur and merge and traditional business models are assaulted and turned upside down. In this new da...
Chris Van Tuin, Chief Technologist for the Western US at Red Hat, has over 20 years of experience in IT and Software. Since joining Red Hat in 2005, he has been architecting solutions for strategic customers and partners with a focus on emerging technologies including IaaS, PaaS, and DevOps. He started his career at Intel in IT and Managed Hosting followed by leadership roles in services and sales engineering at Loudcloud and Linux startups.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is growing rapidly by extending current technologies, products and networks. By 2020, Cisco estimates there will be 50 billion connected devices. Gartner has forecast revenues of over $300 billion, just to IoT suppliers. Now is the time to figure out how you’ll make money – not just create innovative products. With hundreds of new products and companies jumping into the IoT fray every month, there’s no shortage of innovation. Despite this, McKinsey/VisionMobile data...
The web app is agile. The REST API is agile. The testing and planning are agile. But alas, data infrastructures certainly are not. Once an application matures, changing the shape or indexing scheme of data often forces at best a top down planning exercise and at worst includes schema changes that force downtime. The time has come for a new approach that fundamentally advances the agility of distributed data infrastructures. Come learn about a new solution to the problems faced by software organ...
Electric power utilities face relentless pressure on their financial performance, and reducing distribution grid losses is one of the last untapped opportunities to meet their business goals. Combining IoT-enabled sensors and cloud-based data analytics, utilities now are able to find, quantify and reduce losses faster – and with a smaller IT footprint. Solutions exist using Internet-enabled sensors deployed temporarily at strategic locations within the distribution grid to measure actual line lo...
You have your devices and your data, but what about the rest of your Internet of Things story? Two popular classes of technologies that nicely handle the Big Data analytics for Internet of Things are Apache Hadoop and NoSQL. Hadoop is designed for parallelizing analytical work across many servers and is ideal for the massive data volumes you create with IoT devices. NoSQL databases such as Apache HBase are ideal for storing and retrieving IoT data as “time series data.”
Too often with compelling new technologies market participants become overly enamored with that attractiveness of the technology and neglect underlying business drivers. This tendency, what some call the “newest shiny object syndrome,” is understandable given that virtually all of us are heavily engaged in technology. But it is also mistaken. Without concrete business cases driving its deployment, IoT, like many other technologies before it, will fade into obscurity.
As a CIO, are your direct reports IT managers or are they IT leaders? The hard truth is that many IT managers have risen through the ranks based on their technical skills, not their leadership ability. Many are unable to effectively engage and inspire, creating forward momentum in the direction of desired change. Renowned for its approach to leadership and emphasis on their people, organizations increasingly look to our military for insight into these challenges.
Mobile, social, Big Data, and cloud have fundamentally changed the way we live. “Anytime, anywhere” access to data and information is no longer a luxury; it’s a requirement, in both our personal and professional lives. For IT organizations, this means pressure has never been greater to deliver meaningful services to the business and customers.
The IoT market is on track to hit $7.1 trillion in 2020. The reality is that only a handful of companies are ready for this massive demand. There are a lot of barriers, paint points, traps, and hidden roadblocks. How can we deal with these issues and challenges? The paradigm has changed. Old-style ad-hoc trial-and-error ways will certainly lead you to the dead end. What is mandatory is an overarching and adaptive approach to effectively handle the rapid changes and exponential growth.