Our computer simulations have shown that our four main attributes of greenhouse gas pollution, oil consumption, air pollution and total societal costs all follow the same pattern:
- Hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) make modest reductions in each attribute
- Plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) further reduce each attribute, except for GHG emissions, where PHEVs produce approximately the same GHG emissions as gasoline HEVs
- BIomass-powered PHEVs cut pollution and societal costs even further
- Hydrogen-powered fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) cut pollution and societal costs the most, and FCEVs are the only major option that can achieve the goal of 80% reductions in GHGs below 1990 levels
- Battery-powered electric vehicles (BEVs) could reach at best a 55% reduction in GHGs later this century, far short of the 80% reduction goal; BEVs are limited to 40% market penetration since even advanced Li-ion batteries could not provide an affordable BEV with the range and fueling time demanded by consumers, including large SUVs, large vans, and large pickup trucks.
- Hydrogen-powered fuel cell electric vehicles. Hydrogen-powered FCEVs could achieve the 80% reduction in GHGs by the 2070 time period if most LDVs could be converted to hydrogen.