Publication Detail

America's Zero Carbon Action Plan - Chapter 5.2 Accelerating Deep Decarbonization in the U.S. Transportation Sector



Sustainable Transportation Energy Pathways (STEPS), Energy Futures, Policy Institute for Energy, Environment, and the Economy

The transportation sector includes light-duty vehicles, heavy-duty vehicles (trucks), off-road vehicles, buses, rail, shipping, and aviation. Transportation emissions accounted for 37 percent of total CO₂ emissions from energy and industry in 2019. The principal strategy for decarbonizing transportation is electrification (including battery, plug-in hybrid, and hydrogen fuel cells) of all light-duty vehicles, urban-based trucks and buses, rail, much of long-haul trucking, and some short-haul shipping and aviation. For long-haul aviation and long-haul ocean shipping, advanced low-carbon biofuels and synthetic liquids or gases produced with renewable energy are the leading energy contenders. The second strategy builds on initiatives to reduce vehicle use and miles traveled while enhancing accessibility to health, education, jobs, and other services for the mobility disadvantaged. This transition will require a variety of actions by federal, state, and local governments as spelled out in detail in the report that follows.
For the Exec Summary of the Transportation Chapter, go to:
For the full report, America's Zero Carbon Action Plan, go to
For information on the full project and supplementary materials, go to: