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In 2030 the number of motor vehicles on the world’s roads will roughly double from what it was in 2010—from 1.4 billion to about 2.8 billion cars, trucks, motorcycles, and other vehicles. Without strong policies worldwide to improve the energy efficiency of and minimize the pollutant emissions from those vehicles, the consequences of such explosive growth for local air quality and public health, and for the global climate, will be dire.
Well-designed regulations work. For example: In the past decade, policies adopted in jurisdictions ranging from the EU to China have essentially stabilized CO2 emissions from cars and light trucks, even as the vehicle fleet has grown dramatically. But that achievement, great as it is, still falls far short of the reductions in global GHG emissions from transportation that will be needed to constrain the rise in average global temperature to 2º C.
Information is the key to putting transportation and environmental policy on a sound foundation globally. Policy makers need the data that can describe policy trajectories, illuminate the costs and benefits of different policy options, and track progress globally and in regions toward climate and health goals. The ICCT’s roadmap program develops tools and models to meet that need by identifying plausible near-term steps toward regional, national, and international climate and health goals, including GHG/fuel efficiency standards, vehicle emissions standards, in-use vehicle regulations, low-sulfur and low-carbon fuels, adoption of electric-drive vehicles, mode shift, and VKT reduction.