EME 807
Technologies for Sustainability Systems

10.0. Overview



Sustainable transportation refers to not only vehicles, but also includes fuels, infrastructure to deliver distribute these fuels (pipelines, stations), road networks and railways. Assessment of the transportation system needs to address the system effectiveness to meet society needs and environmental load associated with employed vehicles and infrastructures. This lesson overviews three important topics: alternative fuels and their associated impacts, zero-emission vehicles and status of electric vehicle technologies, and perspectives of the mass transit in sustainable community.

Learning Objectives

By the end of this lesson, you should be able to:

  • understand the choices of alternative fuels and list their pros and cons;
  • explain the principles of technologies employed in zero-emission vehicles;
  • compare performance of different transportation technologies by environmental and economic metrics.


Report: Boutwell, M., Hackett, D.J., Soares, M.L., Petroleum and Renewable Fuel Supply Chain, Stillwater Associates, 2014.

Book: National Research Council. Transitions to Alternative Vehicles and Fuels. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press, 2013. Sections 2.5 and 2.6.

Web article: Penalosa, E., Role of Transport in Urban Development Policy, Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, 2005.


If you have any questions while working through this Lesson, please post them to our Message Board forum in Canvas. You can use that space any time to chat about course topics or to ask questions. While you are there, please feel free to post your own responses if you are able to help out a classmate.