Abstract: Today’s vehicles are vast improvements over the Model T of a hundred years ago. They are much more reliable, comfortable, safer, efficient, powerful, and cleaner burning. But in some ways, they’ve barely changed. They are functionally identical and continue to consume large amounts of energy. Why haven’t they changed more? This talk will address the future of combustion engines and petroleum fuels, and what it means for transportation funding, air pollution, climate change, and the future of the US auto industry.
Speaker Biography: Daniel Sperling is Professor of Civil Engineering and Environmental Science and Policy, and founding Director of the Institute of Transportation Studies (ITS-Davis) at the University of California, Davis. He is also co-director of UC Davis's Hydrogen Pathways Program and New Mobility Center. Dr. Sperling is recognized as a leading international expert on transportation technology assessment, energy and environmental aspects of transportation, and transportation policy. In the past 20 years, he has authored or co-authored over 200 technical papers and reports and eight books. He was selected as a lifetime National Associate of The National Academies in 2004, is founding chair and emeritus member of the Alternative Transportation Fuels Committee of the U.S. Transportation Research Board, and...Read more
The video begins at 3:33.
Summary: In an era of reduced government funding, transit operators struggle to reduce operating costs and increase revenues. Energy costs account for an important share of the total costs of urban and suburban bus operators. Using a case study of one operator in Lisbon, Portugal, this talk will expand upon the empirical research on bus transit operation costs and identify the key factors that influence the energy efficiency of the overall bus fleet. Our results of a multivariate analysis find the following dimensions influence transit energy efficiency: vehicle type, commercial speed, road grades and bus routes; and to a lesser extent elements related with engine failures and malfunctions. In addition to these findings, the methodology is a decision-support tool for the bus operator in optimizing energy efficiency. The transferrability of these results and analytical tools to other contexts will also be discussed.
Lewison Lem, Principal Consultant of Parsons Brinckerhoff, on reducing the climate impact of the transportation system.
The video begins at 1:49.
The video begins at 2:35.
“We are faced with a grave crisis that may change our way of life forever. We live in a civilization that evolved on the promise of an endless supply of cheap oil. The era of cheap oil will end, probably much sooner than most people realize. To put this looming crisis in perspective, and to judge its significance, it helps to start from the beginning.”
In this presentation Dr. Goodstein examines the rapid disappearance of oil and predicts its depletion will arrive much sooner than projected. Imagining a world caught suddenly, and perhaps unprepared, without oil, Dr. Goodstein discusses the alternatives and their implications for the environment.
A new OTREC research project, in partnership with the Oregon Department of Transportation, will evaluate the effectiveness of a program to promote "ecodriving," or fuel-efficient driving.
The ODOT program seeks to help the state reduce greenhouse gas emissions by giving commercial drivers training in ecodriving practices.
Led by Portland State University’s Donald Truxillo and John MacArthur, the project was one of the OTREC “Small Starts” grant winners announced earlier this month. The researchers are working with ODOT program manager Stephanie Millar.
ODOT’s effort, rather than concentrating on individual drivers, focuses on entities with a fleet of vehicles at their disposal. Entities — such as the city of Portland, or private, commercial companies — who maintain a fleet of cars and/or trucks will be given materials to educate their employees on ecodriving. It is part of a larger effort on Oregon’s part to reduce harmful emissions and help stop global climate change.