Friday Seminar: Mazyar Zeinali on Commercial Aviation and Climate Change

Airbus A380-800

This week's TRANSOC Friday Seminar is Mazyar Zeinali from the International Council on Clean Transportation presenting "Commercial Aviation and Climate Change: The Role of Technology."

The environmental impact of aviation has been of concern for several decades including specific concerns such as local air quality, impacts on Earth's protective ozone layer, and aircraft induced cloudiness. However, with the 1999 seminal publication by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) entitled 'Aviation and the Global Atmosphere', significant concern has arisen both in aviation climate change impact and mitigation possibilities. To quantify expected return from future technology implementation (near to mid term), the International Civil Aviation Organizational (ICAO) commissioned and published a study conducted by a panel of independent experts (IEs). The IE technology scenarios included returns under typical/continuation of current business-as-usual practices and also accelerated implementation under added future regulatory pressure. The ICCT was a contributing organization to this ICAO study and Dr. Zeinali will present his findings and interpretations for specific technological packages envisioned by the panel and efficiency gains from implementing technology in tighter aircraft designs, better matching operational norms and patterns.

The seminar will take place October 7 from 4-5 PM in 406 Davis Hall. Cookie Hour will be at 3:30, as usual, in the library. 

Friday Seminar - David Brownstone on Fuel Economy Standards

green driving

Tomorrow's TRANSOC Friday Seminar is with David Brownstone of UC Irvine's Department of Economics. He'll present, "Consumer Response to Stricter Fuel Economy Standards."

The impacts of recent changes in Federal light-vehicle fuel economy standards depend crucially on consumers’ response to new vehicles with higher fuel economy and higher prices. Previous studies have primarily relied on stated preference experiments since there was little independent variation in vehicle price, fuel economy, and performance.  The recent introduction of hybrid-electric vehicles has provided some independent variation in these key vehicle attributes, so we use data from the 2009 NHTS data to estimate willingness to pay for light vehicle fuel economy.  We also estimate the “rebound effect” of purchasing more fuel efficient vehicles.  Finally we will comment on the impact of measurement errors and partial observability on previous studies.

The seminar will take place Friday, September 16, 2011 from 4-5 PM in 406 Davis Hall. Don't forget about Cookie Hour preceding it in the library at 3:30 PM. See you there!


DOD Finds Alternative Fuels Save Lives

Fueled and ready to go back to Anaconda.

With almost half of the casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan involving fuel convoys, the Department of Defense has found that employing alternative fuels can save lives and avoid injuries. As Sierra magazine reported, soldiers on the ground have found that portable solar generators and battery packs not only reduced the number of dangerous convoys needed, but they also provided quieter, cooler energy and reduced the loads carried in the field. A RAND report earlier this year, however, questioned the benefits to the military of adopting alternative fuels. Next month the Army will open an Energy Initiatives Office Task Force to promote partnerships with the private sector to develop large-scale renewable energy projects on Army land.

Fuel-Economy Standards to Double by 2025

This morning in Washington D.C., away from the debt ceiling debate, President Obama spoke about raising fuel efficiency standards. On stage with auto industry executives, he laid out his plan:

And today, these outstanding companies are committing to doing a lot more.  The companies here today have endorsed our plan to continue increasing the mileage on their cars and trucks over the next 15 years.  We’ve set an aggressive target, and the companies here are stepping up to the plate. 

By 2025, the average fuel economy of their vehicles will nearly double to almost 55 miles per gallon.  (Applause.)  So this is an incredible commitment that they’ve made.  And these are some pretty tough business guys.  They know their stuff.  And they wouldn’t be doing it if they didn’t think that it was ultimately going to be good business and good for America. 


Using less oil also means our cars will produce fewer emissions.  So when your kids are biking around the neighborhood, they’ll be breathing less pollution and fewer toxins.  It means we’re doing more to protect our air and water.  And it means we’re reducing the carbon pollution that threatens our climate.

The President took time to thank California for leading the charge for better fuel efficiency in vehicles. You may remember when the state sued the EPA in 2008 over emissions rules where Federal standards did not meet the aggressive targets of AB 32

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