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Transportation in a 100% Renewable Energy System


A 100% renewable economy would give a lasting solution to the challenges raised by climate change, energy security, sustainability, and pollution. The conversion of the present transport system appears to be one of the most difficult aspects of such renewable transition. This study reviews the technologies and systems that are being proposed or proven as alternative to fossil-fuel based transportation, and their prospects for their entry into the post-carbon era, from both technological and energetic viewpoints. The energetic cost of the transition from the current transportation system into global 100% renewable transportation is estimated, as well as the electrical energy required for the operation of the new renewable transportation sector. A 100% renewable transport providing the same service as global transport in 2014 would demand about 18% less energy. The main reduction is expected in road transport (69%), but the shipping and air sectors would notably increase their consumptions: 163% and 149%, respectively. The analysis concludes that a 100% renewable transportation is feasible, but not necessarily compatible with indefinite increase of resources consumption. The major material and energy limitations and obstacles of each transport sector for this transition are shown.

Related subjects: Applications & Pathways
Countries: Spain

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