Energy

  • Connected and automated vehicles (CAVs)
    are poised to reshape transportation and mobility by replacing
    humans as the driver and service provider. While the primary
    stated motivation for vehicle automation is to improve safety
    and convenience of road mobility, this transformation also
    provides a valuable opportunity to improve vehicle energy
    efficiency and reduce emissions in the transportation sector.
    Progress in vehicle efficiency and functionality, however, does
    not necessarily translate to net positive environmental
    outcomes. Here, we examine the interactions between CAV
    technology and the environment at four levels of increasing
    complexity: vehicle, transportation system, urban system, and
    society. We find that environmental impacts come from CAV-facilitated transformations at all four levels, rather than from CAV
    technology directly. We anticipate net positive environmental impacts at the vehicle, transportation system, and urban system
    levels, but expect greater vehicle utilization and shifts in travel patterns at the society level to offset some of these benefits.
    Focusing on the vehicle-level improvements associated with CAV technology is likely to yield excessively optimistic estimates of
    environmental benefits. Future research and policy efforts should strive to clarify the extent and possible synergetic effects from
    a systems level to envisage and address concerns regarding the short- and long-term sustainable adoption of CAV technology.

  • School for Environment and Sustainability, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109, United States

    Source: https://pubs.acs.org/doi/10.1021/acs.est.8b00127

    Courtesy: https://pubs.acs.org

    Copyright: DOI: 10.1021/acs.est.8b00127 Environ. Sci. Technol. 2018, 52, 11449−11465. © 2018 American Chemical Society

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