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Report Concludes that 10% Deployment of Existing Hybrid and Battery Electric Vehicles Could Deliver 3.5% Cut in Irish Road Transport CO2 Emissions

Replacement of 10% of cars, vans and buses in Ireland with currently available models of hybrid and battery electric vehicles could reduce national CO2 emissions by 0.35 million tonnes annually, according to a study on the Costs and Benefits of the use of Hybrid Electric Vehicles and Battery Electric Vehicles in Ireland, conducted by Sustainable Energy Ireland (SEI). Total CO2 emissions from the road transport sector (excluding air, sea and freight transport) in Ireland in 2006 amounted to approximately 10 million tonnes.

The report found that efficiency improvements for adopting currently available hybrid and battery electric vehicles to replace conventional vehicles are greatest for vans, cars and buses in urban service. Specifically, the report found that:

  • On a per vehicle basis, the largest CO2 emission reductions can be achieved by switching full size / midi buses to battery electric, plug-in-hybrid or hybrid vehicles. However, at the current time, there are few large size / midi electric buses in operation and no plug-in-hybrid buses available for sale in Ireland. Therefore, switching full size/midi buses to hybrids is the most appropriate substitute to make (if costs are disregarded) at the present time.

  • If 10% of either the car, van or bus fleet was going to be switched, then the most beneficial in terms of CO2 emission reductions is to switch gasoline cars to battery electric cars. The second most beneficial switch is from petrol cars to diesel hybrid cars. However, these would both have cost implications.

    The emissions benefit is predicated on an average power generation scenario, which includes nuclear. Remove nuclear power from the calculations, and the battery electric vehicle has a higher CO2 footprint than a hybrid or a conventional diesel car, according to work at the University of Liege (Belgium) cited in the report.

  • The most cost-effective options are to switch conventional gasoline vans to either gasoline or diesel hybrids. These switches lead to cost savings and CO2 savings and hence lead to a high benefit to cost ratio.

This research is of particular importance within the context of our ability to understand how we can use currently available technologies to bring about improvements in the CO2 intensity of the transport sector. Ireland has targets to meet in terms of reduction of CO2 and with the transport sector currently accounting for 35% of energy related emissions it is imperative that we prioritize measures to bring about meaningful reductions in the short to medium term.

—Brendan Halligan, Chairman, SEI

According to recommendations made in the reports, fleet vehicles in cities or urban areas should be targeted first under any plans to bring about a move to the use of hybrid electric vehicles and battery electric vehicles. Urban road transport is by its nature more fuel intensive and organizations with large numbers of vehicles in urban use, such as municipal vehicles, police and public transport fleets, would benefit most from efficiencies associated with the integration of Hybrid or Battery Electric Vehicles into their fleets.

Policies which should be examined as part of a wider policy review to ensure that obstacles to the introduction of such vehicles in Ireland are minimized, include a review of the taxation system in the aftermath of the introduction of the new VRT regulations as well as the existing regulatory framework for the use of non conventional road vehicles. Other supporting measures for stimulating uptake which have been suggested in the reports include subsidies for vehicle purchase or conversion, subsidies for refuelling infrastructure, common procurement and public private partnerships.

SEI published the study’s findings in the form of two reports, Hybrid and Battery Electric Vehicles: Technology, Costs and Benefits and Hybrid and Battery Electric Vehicles: Measures to Stimulate Uptake. SEI has also published a buyers guide and cost of ownership calculator in order to assist vehicle owners in their purchasing decisions.

In 2006 the transport sector in Ireland was the only sector in the economy not to experience either reductions in energy related C02 emissions or low levels of growth compared with the previous year. The transport sector recorded a 7.1% growth in emissions in 2006 compared to 2005. Transport now accounts for 35% of energy related emissions.

The study undertaken by SEI included a review of the primary potential candidate owner groupings and uses for hybrid electric vehicles, plug in hybrid electric vehicles and battery electric vehicles. A review of the electricity supply implications for the widespread use of battery electric vehicles was also undertaken while SEI also examined worldwide experiences in the use of hybrid electric vehicles and battery electric fleets.

Sustainable Energy Ireland (SEI) is the statutory authority charged with promoting and assisting the development of sustainable energy in the country. SEI is funded by the Irish Government under the National Development Plan, with programs part-financed by the European Union.



These improvements can now be made at a profit.
A profit????

There is an estimate of 45 trillion to transition world wide off the fossil fuel economy.

I didn't say the world, I said solar-charged electric cars.  30 billion barrels/year @ ~$130/bbl is ~$4 trillion/year.  Vehicles consume the bulk of this.  Nanosolar claims to be building PV at around $1/peak watt, making energy at 10¢/kWh or less.  That and existing batteries are more than good enough to beat the price of $4/gallon gas.

Bob Bastard

In other words, what America needs is $5/gallon gasoline.

Exactly. It just would have been nice if we would have been smart enough to place reasonable taxes on petroleum years ago, so that the majority of the money from the sale of that $5 gasoline could be going toward mitigating the external costs of petroleum, rather than going directly into the Swiss bank accounts of Saudi Princes or to help fund a perpetual Hugo Chavez presidency.

Axil and BB,

Simply taking money from everyone does not improve the situation. Unless you do something useful with it.

The politicians do not pump a single barrel of oil; produce a single new vehicle; or generate a new watt of electricity. Period.

If we judge their past efforts, the politicians have voted to kill long term Fusion reseach in favor of immediate boondogle "earmarks" for their own district boodlers. They have manifested this, EVERY time they have had the political power to do so.

They have been swayed by the mob to restrict and prevent the pumping of oil, every time they have had the political power to do so. Lets not obtain California offshore oil; lets not get any Oregon or Washington oil. Lets restrict any East Coast oil. Lets restrict half of the Caribbean too. Lets not touch Floridian oil, but its all right to let the Chinese drill off Florida. Lets not touch shale. Either.

Do we need to refine it? Forget building new or even adding to present refineries.

Do we need more elctric generation? Never! California eco-crazies have no coal plants; have prematurely closed 3 of 4 nuclear reactors leaving only 1 still running; and even shuttered some wind and natural gas generation that works, but they restrict building power lines to deliver it to customers, or prevent gas deliveries to others. So where do they get electricity?

They force it to be imported. Sound familiar? If Mexico, Arizona, Nevada, Colorado, Utah, Oregon and Washington didn't export power to eco-crazie California, the lights would go out and stay out. It is long past rolling brown-out time in California.

They have voted to emasculate the manufacturers by taxing both the manufacturers directly and indirectly; and also to tax the capital markets they need to acquire the funds to build factories to build better widgets; be they electric automobiles or cleaner power plants.

I personally like the fact that the US legal system allows an aggrieved party, to civilly prosecute malfactors without having to rely on a possibly corrupted official governmental system. The US private tort system serves this useful purpose. But this freedom to sue can be corrupted as well. And it has been.

The biggest contributor to the one party, even bigger than the AFL-CIO, is Big Law. It is the only big american industry not demonized yet. Excesses in this Big Law power is true corruption. An even greater corruptive excess is the "contracting out" to Big Law firms the right to prosecute anti-trust cases, in return for campaign contributions.

David Boeis' "contracted out" legal persecution of Microsoft is a classic example. His firm made hundreds of millions in legal fees while establishing novel ideas of anti-Trust.

It was shooting fish in a barrel, insuring multi-millions to Boies and legal partners.

Novel theories of anti-Trust has created almost impossible problem for the automakers and other firms, in adopting new technologies.

Consider. Back in the 1910s and 1920s, Ford and Sloan could and did vertically integrate their auto companies, to the benefit of customers.

As a auto customer, you could now go to a single dealer, purchase from Ford or GM, a complete auto, for the first time. You no longer had to go to Fisher for an auto chassis, Libby-Owens for a windshield, Exide for a battery, Firestone for tires, GM/Ford for an engine, Bendix for an electric starter, et cetera. They were all put together for you, by one company.

But under the novel theories now in effect, and promulgated by the Dems, you have to do exactly that for Microsoft. Mr. Boies now forces you to go one place for a PC; another for an OS; another place for this application software; another place for a peripheral, and another place for another application, et cetera.

This hurts the American auto manufacturers in trying to adopt to new things, like electric autos. They can't purchase or invest in a small battery maker who has a good technology, but no capital to build factories. The same applies to electric motor makers. The same for makers of phase inverters, et cetera. They can't even sponsor common research of value to all maunfacturers without a "Papal dispensation" from the governmental anti-trust bureaucracy.

Look at the US Advanced Battery Consortium, the USABC. It literally took an Act of Congress to provide the papal dispensation to allow Ford, GM and Chysler to even meet in a room, and discuss a common problem. Like the need for an advanced battery... something like Li-Ion, that they then sponsored, for example.

Is it any wonder that LG is the de facto battery maker selected by GM for the Volt; and tiny American battery maker A123 loses out?

But there is no such restriction on Toyota, Nissan and Honda in Japan. Toyota is investing in, and building battery factories, with Panasonic; Nissan is doing the same with Nec, as is Honda with AESC.

For that matter it is common knowledge that MITI paid every single dollar needed to develop the Toyota's Hybrid Synergy Drive. Can you even imagine, say Ford or Chrysler approaching the government to use soemof the extorted Trillions, to pay for the design and development of its hybrid drive system? Of course not, don't be silly.

So what will the government do with all the tax money extracted?

Why waste it, of course.


I doubt that $5/gal will be enough to provoke a major change to electrified vehicles. An additional $1/gal per year for the next 6 years would be barely enough. At $10+/gal the majority may be ready to consider a switch.

Call it a transistion or carbon tax if you may. Set up a huge Federal transportation transition fund with all the $$ billions collected. Help the Big-3 with transition cost, up to 66% or up to $10 billion each. Help existing car owners with PHEVs kit installation cost, up to $12K each. Help Hybrid buyers with up to $5K each, Help new PHEV and BEV buyers with up to $12K each.

Many would call that too much government intervention, but it would be much better to pay special national transition taxes than to keep sending $500+ billion a year for imported OIL to you know who.

At the current rate, oil imports will cost (15 million barrels x 365 days x $150) = $821 billion a year and more, very shorthly. Why not spend at least that much on transition to locally produced electricity and electrified vehicles.

Come on America, you can do it.


Sorry, I missed the name again.


It looks to me like $4/gallon is already doing the job.  GM looks to be fully behind the Volt instead of treating it as a PR stunt.  Smith Newtons are coming to the USA, and both VentureVehicles and Aptera bring product to market next year.

$5/gallon would close the deal.


"setup a huge Federal transportation transition fund with all the $$ billions collected"

Wow, maybe it would work as well as our Social Security System (aka wealth redistribution/ponzi scheme).

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