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476660-00080-1 Report Abstract

Hybrid Distribution Trucks: Costs and Benefits

Garrett Anderson and Robert Harrison, University of Texas at Austin, June 2011, 119 pp. (476660-00080-1)

The respective populations of the United States and Texas are expected to significantly increase over to the next several decades, primarily in urban and metropolitan areas. Economists have also predicted that oil prices will rise in real terms during the same period. Air quality is getting worse in a number of metropolitan areas, triggering non-attainment penalties and spurring an interest in cleaner transportation. Incentives and new policies must be adopted to increase the efficiency of the transportation system and thus move freight with a reduced impact on society and the environment. Hybrids can potentially help solve this issue through their increased fuel economy and reduced emissions. This project evaluated a package delivery truck, beverage delivery truck, and a refuse truck. The research determined that the additional cost (with current prices) of the hybrid refuse truck was justified, but not for the other two trucks. The social cost of emissions was also estimated to help justify hybrids’ implementation. With this information, the rate of hybrid truck adoption was estimated for various policy scenarios. The results indicated that a correctly designed incentive program can greatly increase the rate of hybrid adoption and could be justified by the additional social benefits of emissions reduction.


Keywords: Hybrid, Distribution, Costs, Benefits, Demand, Fuel Consumption, Freight, Air Quality, Emissions, Texas

ENTIRE REPORT (Adobe Acrobat File – 3.9 MB)