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Energy Use and Policy in the US Trucking Sector
October 10, 2012

About the Event
The importance of trucking in the US economy is expected to grow in the coming years, but greater oil consumption and pollution emissions will accompany that growth. The federal government has recently introduced greenhouse gas emissions standards for new trucks to reduce the negative effects of trucking that arise from oil consumption. The standards are expected to tighten significantly in the coming years, making this program both very ambitious—it is among the first in the world—and also very controversial.

There is great uncertainty regarding the effects of the standards on shippers and carriers in the industry, in terms of the fuel economy of the trucks; how the trucks are used; and the ultimate costs and effectiveness of the standards. This uncertainty stems from the novelty of the regulations as well as the lack of public knowledge about the industry that would inform the baseline—including the current practices for adopting fuel efficiency technology and deciding how trucks are driven.

There is currently a unique opportunity to answer fundamental questions about the industry—which will improve understanding of what impacts the standards will have and help identify policies that will reduce oil consumption and greenhouse gas emissions most effectively and at lowest cost to the industry and the economy. The objective of this workshop was to convene experts from industry, government, academia, and nongovernmental organizations to identify these questions.



Welcome and Introduction
Alan Krupnick, Resources for the Future
Session 1: State of the Trucking Industry 

This panel will include general sector information and trends, competition with other forms of freight transit, infrastructure funding declines, and increased reliance on tolls.


Session 2: Alternative Fuels and Technologies for the Trucking Sector


Session 3: The Energy Efficiency Paradox: Why Aren’t Fuel Efficiency Improvements in Trucks Already Happening?


Session Four: The Future of Energy Policy Affecting Trucking


Session Five: Roundtable discussion on research priorities (including data needs)

Concluding remarks

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