George Eads, KG Duleep, Lew Fulton, Mitsuhiko Yamashita, Steve Plotkin, and Henry Li at the GFEI roundtable event
Delegates hear George Eads present the GFEI’s Draft Annual Report
With upwards of 800 transport experts from across the globe gathering in Leipzig to discuss Innovation in Transport’, the stage was set for an interesting and lively exchange at the Global Fuel Economy Initiative-hosted meeting on May 27th. The audience was treated to the views of a panel of experts and industry representatives, including Steve Plotkin of Argonne National Lab in the US, George Eads, of Charles River Associates, and KG Duleep whilst Henry Li of BYD and Mitsuhiko Yamashita of Nissan represented the industry point of view. The panel was chaired by Lew Fulton of the IEA.
In presenting the early findings of his work for the GFEI Annual Report, George emphasized that though the technology potential to achieve a 50% improvement by 2030 compared to 2005 appears to be there (at least for the US and Europe), it will still be quite challenging to achieve the GFEI goal. This is because of the tendencies to use technologies for purposes other than fuel economy, such as improving performance.
Subsequent presentations highlighted the reason for differences in fuel economy across the globe, with most of the difference between the US and other countries explained by sales differences (shares of different market segments) but most of the difference between France, China and India appearing to be due to technology differences. The balance between the role which EVs and ICEs might play was also discussed a length with opinions split on whether we can expect a large shift to electric drive vehicles by 2020, and whether there is a role for more efficient conventional vehicles, including hybrids and other strategies. In general, the message appeared to be that we must maintain a strong focus on incremental improvements over the next 5-10 years, whilst continuing to encourage the rapid development of alternatives also.
The discussions raised a series of other points also:
- Consumer use of vehicles is a key area to address (such as via eco driving programs).
- We need to focus on actual on-road fuel economy, not just tested efficiency
- Fiscal policy is an important lever, and differential vehicle taxes, such as the bonus-malus system in France, may be a key to pushing consumers toward buying more efficient vehicles.
- Standards can play a role too
Sheila Watson, Director of Environment, FIA Foundation said ‘This meeting was an important opportunity for the GFEI to share the findings of our work with a wide range of stakeholders, and to hear their views. The people who attended this event – policymakers, manufacturers and experts – are all key players who we need to convince of the strength of our argument, and with whom we need to work in taking our campaign forward. It was heartening therefore to see so many of them attend and engage so positively’
Click here to download the Programme >
Lew Fulton, Transport Energy Specialist, International Energy Agency >
George Eads, Executive Director, GFE 2010 >
KG Duleep, Managing Director, ICF International >
Steven Plotkin, Analyst, Argonne National Laboratory >
Mitsuhiko Yamashita, Executive Vice President, Nissan >