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Options for reducing carbon dioxide emissions from road and rail vehicles

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The goal of the Ecovehicle project is to promote the concept of road and rail vehicles with a low environmental footprint and specifically to define a classification for those vehicles which can be considered as environmentally friendly. 

In this Eureka project workshop, the options for the reduction in carbon dioxide emissions from both road and rail transport will be reviewed against a background of rising energy prices, increased societal concern about pollution, and carbon emissions. As a major pollutant source, transport  will have to make its contribution towards reducing carbon emissions

Carbon dioxide is the principal by-product of the combustion of fossil fuels like oil and gas and is consequently the principal gas responsible for global warming.  All the available evidence suggests that our human activity is inducing changes in the climate at a rate at which ecospecies cannot adapt.  In order to limit irreversible changes in climate, the IPCC concluded that it will be necessary to stabilise the world’s carbon emissions by 2020 and then to decrease these by a minimum of 3% each and every year up to at least 2100 if the 2 C limit on average temperature rise is not to be exceeded (5th IPCC assessment report).  .

The workshop topics have been selected to illustrate the wide range of options for reducing such emissions most of which impact on other technologies.  Transforming the market for such carbon reducing technologies involves an analysis of costs, benefits and environmental impact.  such as electric vehicles and encouraging a modal shift from road to rail.  So for electricity to be the energy source for electric vehicles and the modal shift from road to rail , its supply will have to be decarbonised which will require increasing amounts of renewable energy sources and storage.

The speakers will be followed by a panel discussion to which all attendees will be encouraged to contribute their viewpoint. 

The workshop will be of interest to scientists and engineers, planners, local, regional and federal authorities striving to improve local and global environments.