Publication Detail

Shared Use of Electric Autonomous Vehicles: Air Quality and Health Impacts of Future Mobility in the United States

UCD-ITS-RP-21-45

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Suggested Citation:
Pan, Shuai, Lewis Fulton, Anirban Roy, Jia Jung, Yunsoo Choi, H. Oliver Gao (2021) Shared Use of Electric Autonomous Vehicles: Air Quality and Health Impacts of Future Mobility in the United States. Renewable & Sustainable Energy Reviews 149 (111380)

Vehicle electrification, automation, and shared mobility – also referred to as the transportation three revolutions (3Rs) – are the emerging trends in future mobility. This study performed a comprehensive integrated analysis to investigate the potential future development of passenger transportation in the United States. A technical-economic mobility model, a chemical transport model, and a health impact assessment tool were utilized. This study first adopted several assumptions for vehicle sales under the impact of the 3Rs, and made projections to 2050 for vehicle stocks, distance travel, energy use, and carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. This study then quantified the impacts of changing emissions on concentrations of fine particulate matter and associated health benefits. Compared to a projected 2050 business-as-usual case, the wide use of electrification could lead to reductions of ~50% in petroleum consumption and ~75% in CO2 emissions, and obtain health benefits of 5500 prevented premature deaths, corresponding to $58 billion annually. The net energy impacts of automation are highly uncertain, and the improved efficiency from automation might be offset by an increase in travel. Sharing would bring additional benefits. The combination of the 3Rs could maximize the energy savings, carbon mitigations, and health benefits. The results of this study suggest that policies/incentives are needed to promote the transition from single-occupied conventional vehicles to shared electric vehicles.

Key words: Electric vehicles, Automation, Shared mobility, Air quality, Public health, Future mobility