National Low Carbon Fuel Standard: Technical Analysis Report
49 Pages Posted: 20 Jul 2012 Last revised: 12 Sep 2012
Date Written: July 19, 2012
Petroleum fuels make up essentially all of the transportation fuels used today. But fossil fuel use has many economic and environmental downsides, including a weakening of our energy security due to reliance on imported energy sources, air pollution that impacts health, and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions that contribute to climate change. To reduce fossil fuel use and GHG emissions in the transportation sector and improve energy security requires a coordinated effort to reduce travel demand, improve vehicle efficiency, and switch to cleaner, lower-carbon fuels. Here we focus on switching to new fuels and examine the potential role a national low carbon fuel standard (LCFS) can play in bringing this about.
This report analyzes the costs and benefits of a national LCFS policy, together with or in place of the existing national Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS2). The companion report, National Low Carbon Fuel Standard: Policy Design Recommendations (PDR), suggests how best to design an LCFS. Both consider the possibility of an LCFS replacing or being adopted alongside RFS2.
Keywords: transportation, fuel policy, greenhouse gas emissions, energy security, indirect land use change, electric vehicles, performance standard
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