Transport, Energy and CO2

Moving towards Sustainability

About this report

Transport accounts for nearly one-quarter of global energy-related CO2 emissions. To achieve the necessary deep cuts in greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, transport must play a significant role. However, without strong global action, car ownership worldwide is set to triple to over two billion by 2050. Trucking activity will double and air travel could increase fourfold. These trends will lead to a doubling of transport energy use, with an even higher growth rate in CO2 emissions as the planet shifts toward high-CO2 synthetic fuels. How can we enable mobility without accelerating climate change?
Transport, Energy and CO2: Moving Toward Sustainability provides answers to this question. It finds that if we change the way we travel, adopt technologies to improve vehicle efficiency and shift to low-CO2 fuels, we can move onto a different pathway where transport CO2 emissions by 2050 are far below current levels, at costs that are lower than many assume. The report discusses the prospects for shifting more travel to the most efficient modes and reducing travel growth rates, improving vehicle fuel efficiency by up to 50% using cost-effective, incremental technologies, and moving toward electricity, hydrogen, and advanced biofuels to achieve a more secure and sustainable transport future. If governments implement strong policies to achieve this scenario, transport can play its role and dramatically reduce CO2 emissions by 2050.
This report is one of three new IEA end-use studies, together with industry and buildings, which look at the role of technologies and policies in transforming the way energy is used in these sectors.