White paper

Survey of best practices in reducing emissions through vehicle replacement programs

In many regions of the world, older, high-emitting vehicles account for a small percentage of the overall vehicle fleet but a disproportionately large share of total emissions. These vehicles may be responsible for more than 50% of particulate matter and black carbon emissions by 2020.

A variety of emission control programs have been developed to reduce emissions from these legacy, high-emitting vehicles. Vehicle replacement, retrofit, and repower programs can have an immediate impact because they reduce emissions from inefficient vehicles in the fleet within a short period of time. Positive environmental impacts can be achieved with the reduction of gaseous pollutants (CO, HC, NOx), as well as of particulate matter. Greenhouse gas emissions are also reduced, especially of short-lived climate pollutants such as black carbon, one of the main components of particulate emissions.

This paper focuses primarily on one element of that array of policy options, vehicle replacement programs, which seek to replace older and gross-emitting vehicles with newer, more efficient, and environmentally friendly vehicles. This paper evaluates eight vehicle replacement programs from around the world and identifies five best practices in the areas of program design and implementation, as well as fiscal incentives and policies, that can serve as guidelines for policymakers.