MIT Estimates Petroleum Use Can Be Cut Using Hybrid Cars ~ Hybrid Car Review
Hybrid Car Review: MIT Estimates Petroleum Use Can Be Cut Using Hybrid Cars

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

MIT Estimates Petroleum Use Can Be Cut Using Hybrid Cars

An MIT study shows petroleum use can be cut to pre-2000 levels in the US if consumers switch to fuel conserving technology, such as hybrid cars. But we would need to sacrifice speed and size.

According to Anup Bandivadekar, an analyst at the International Council on Clean Transportation, "There's all this fascination with vehicle technology--more hybrids, more diesels, and so on. But this result shows that you can achieve a greater reduction in fuel use at a potentially lower cost just by focusing on reducing fuel consumption rather than increasing performance and size."

If current levels continue, gas use will be up 35 percent from 2005 to 765 billion liters of gasoline by 2035.

The analysts tried three different scenarios. In the first, advanced gas saving technologies have gained fractional market share, but 1/3 of all cars still come with internal combustion engines. In the second, battery development stalls, hybrids are too expensive, but turbocharged and diesel engines combine for 75 percent of the market. In the third, hybrids and plug-in hybrid cars make up 55 percent of the market.

The hybrid dominated marketplace gives the largest cut in fuel use, at a rate of 40% lower than if no action takes place.

Bandivadekar is calling for an emphasis on reducing fuel consumption (ERFC).

"If our goal is to achieve deep, long-term reductions in fuel use and emissions we should do all these things-increase the ERFC, improve today's engines, increase the market penetration rate of advanced propulsion technologies and find ways to reduce the rate of growth in demand. With that combination we can get very deep cuts by 2035. To make those things happen, we need strong, long-term policies and we need to adopt them now because the longer we wait the higher the starting point is and the more difficult the task."

Source: Physorg

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