The challenge

Various pathways to net zero transport are being explored. Exciting examples include battery-powered electric vehicles and relevant recharging technologies, hydrogen-based fuel cell electric vehicles, as well as zero-emissions liquid fuels. The challenge is to not only optimise the underlying technologies, but to also identify which technology — or combination of technologies — will be the most cost-effective way to completely replace the Internal Combustion Engine.

Techno-economic evaluations of the options will play a central role in this work. For example, for any emerging net zero transport technology we will need to project tonnes of CO2 reduced and other co-benefits, then weigh this against any costs in order to determine whether it is a truly viable option.

Why this research is valuable

Transport is responsible for about 20% of Australia’s emissions. Therefore the transition to net zero transport is essential if Australia is to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. Researchers at NZI will develop the tools that will facilitate this transition at lowest cost and, by extension, guide transport investment to where it can have the greatest impact.

Decarbonising Transport Efficiently – Research areas

  • Develop a systematic approach to evaluate economic and environmental costs as well as benefits across technologies.
  • Meta-analysis on existing literature to identify where evidence is strong.
  • Devise measures for evaluation where evidence is missing.
  • Use the new platform to evaluate proposed policies, plans, projects, enable it to be incorporated in standard public sector business cases for transport investment.

Want to know more?

This research will help to shape the future of sustainable travel. Click here if you want to know more or are interested in joining our research team.