To avoid significant global disruption, scientists assert that global warming must be kept below a 2-degree Celsius rise from pre-industrial levels?a goal formalized in the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement. Meeting that challenge will require near total decarbonization of global economic activity by 2060.
The transportation sector accounts for a quarter of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions. Electrification of this sector is underway and there is reason to believe that we can decarbonize the automobile industry by 2060. This report reviews the innovations and regulations that have helped facilitate electric vehicle adoption in the past. It explores the electric technologies that hold the most promise for product replacement and the levers that can be pulled to hasten the transition from fossil fuels to battery and fuel cell powered vehicles, as well as the influence of autonomous driving.