Element Energy

Low Carbon Transport

The way we transport people and goods is expected to change more in the next two decades than in the whole of the last century. By 2050, light vehicles must be almost completely decarbonised, and deep reductions are required in sectors such as trucks, aviation and shipping. In parallel, UK cities have an urgent short term need to address local air pollution. Addressing these challenges necessitates extensive adoption of low and zero carbon powertrains, which often require new recharging/refuelling infrastructure and changes to consumer behaviour. In addition, the expected electrification of transport provides both challenges and opportunities for the wider energy system, and will create new opportunities for jobs and economic growth.

The Transport Team provides its clients – national and regional government bodies, as well as a diverse range of private sector clients including car manufacturers, charging point operators and energy companies – with robust evidence to allow them to respond to and influence the changes facing the sector. This includes supporting the design of new policies to support low carbon transport through our forecasting tools, used by the UK Department for Transport, Transport Scotland and numerous private sector clients. We bring a deep technical understanding of the new and disruptive technologies, such as automotive batteries and connected and autonomous vehicles. We combine this technical knowledge with an understanding of customer needs, for example to develop regional infrastructure strategies for alternative fuel vehicles in Birmingham, Leeds, Liverpool and London or to support start-ups and established companies in developing new low carbon products and services.

Key skills and expertise

Forecasting changes in vehicle technologies and mobility trends – this includes projecting future market shares of various technologies based on the changing costs and performance of different powertrain options (such as battery electric vehicles) and different policy scenarios, and assessing the resulting air quality and CO2 impacts at an EU, national or local level. Our work covers all transport modes, from cars and vans through to buses, trucks, trains and the aviation and marine sectors.

Understanding customer behaviour – our quantitative survey and consultation work with private and fleet users ensures that our advice accounts for the real-world needs of customers, leading to more effective policies and more successful new products.

Business modelling – this includes developing business cases for low carbon products and services, modelling economic impacts of low carbon policies and disruptive technologies, and securing European and national funding for innovation and demonstration projects.


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Examples of some of our projects

ECCo: modelling car and van uptake