Observations on the current happenings in the world of vehicles and the fuels that power them from Fuels Institute Executive Director, John Eichberger.
On the Road Again
If the global priority with regards to the transportation sector is to reduce carbon emissions, then putting all our eggs in one basket and waiting for electrification to transform the world is already a failed strategy. With nearly 1.5 billion vehicles in the world, and with more than 90 million new vehicles sold annually (*non-pandemic years, of course), it is impossible to envision a transition to relying on only battery electric vehicles (BEV) any time soon, no matter what governments may try to do with regards to sales requirements. So, what should be done with regards to the existing and continuing combustion engine-liquid fuels market?
Life is a Highway
On January 20, 2021, President Joe Biden signed an executive order committing the United States to accept the provisions of the Paris Agreement on climate change. This was among his first acts as President and, in my opinion, symbolizes the commitment of his administration to pursuing policies that will reduce carbon emissions in the U.S. With this commitment comes the need to fully understand the options that may be available to policymakers, along with a comparison of their relative effectiveness and costs so that the best combination of policies can be developed and implemented.
Everybody Wants to Rule the World
In general, the developed economies of the world are uniting in their pursuit of a lower carbon/carbon neutral/net zero carbon emissions transportation system. It is a laudable goal and one that deserves careful attention, commitment and coordinated action to reduce carbon emissions throughout the global market. Yet, at the end of 2020 there seemed to be a significant lack of coordination, especially when we consider the flurry of activity with regards to banning the sales of internal combustion engines in the relatively near future.