programs / Heavy-duty vehicles

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The steady growth in freight transport by truck presents a challenge to efforts at reducing hazardous air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions. Though most countries have fuel economy standards for passenger vehicles, as of 2011 only Japan and the United States have set efficiency and GHG emission standards for heavy-duty vehicles.

Most heavy-duty vehicles are powered by diesel engines that, without pollution controls, can emit high levels of other pollutants that contribute to global warming  and local air pollution.  For example, uncontrolled diesel vehicles produce high levels of particulate matter, a fraction of which has a warming effect, and nitrogen oxides, which are an ingredient of ozone (also known as smog), an important greenhouse gas. These pollutants are associated with bronchitis, asthma, and other lung diseases, and are responsible for millions of premature deaths worldwide. In 2013, the World Health Organization classified diesel exhaust as carcinogenic to humans, based on evidence of an increase in lung cancer after long-term exposure.

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Recently Released

Cost effectiveness of advanced efficiency technologies for long-haul tractor-trailers in the 2020–2030 timeframe
Evaluation, based on leading technology effectiveness, technology cost, and fuel price data, of payback periods for the efficiency technologies analyzed in a companion paper on tractor-trailer technology potential.
White paper
Advanced tractor-trailer efficiency technology potential in the 2020–2030 timeframe
Assesses, through simulation modeling, the potential of various efficiency technologies to improve tractor-trailer efficiency in long-haul applications, 2020–2030.
White paper
Regulatory considerations for advancing commercial pickup and van efficiency technology in the United States
Analysis of data, technologies, and regulatory design considerations related to establishing efficiency standards for commercial heavy-duty pickups and vans.
White paper
 

From the ICCT Blogs

Eighteen wheels and ten miles per gallon
The average long-haul tractor-trailer on U.S. highways gets the same 6 miles per gallon of diesel that it did decades ago. But there are clear signs that that, finally, is about to change.
Staff Blog
When will heavy-duty pickups and vans compete on efficiency too?
Nobody really knows the fuel economy of new commercial pickups and vans, because manufacturers aren't required to publicly disclose it. But that could be about to change, with Phase 2 of the US medium- and heavy-duty vehicle efficiency standards.
Staff Blog
Black carbon emissions from shipping: Fact-checking conventional wisdom
A common estimate of shipping's contribution to total global emissions of black carbon turns out to be wrong — way wrong. The IMO's Marine Environment Protection committee should take notice next month in London.
Staff Blog

The Staff

Fanta Kamakaté
Fanta Kamakaté
Chief Program Officer
Nic Lutsey
Nic Lutsey
Program Director / US Co-Lead
Rachel Muncrief
Rachel Muncrief
Heavy-Duty Vehicles Lead
Benjamin Sharpe
Benjamin Sharpe
Senior Researcher / Canada Lead