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Energy Policy – VTPI Special Newsletter

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  • Todd Alexander Litman
    Here is information on timely new energy policy reports: Managing Transport Challenges When Oil Prices Rise (http://www.ltsa.govt.nz/research/reports/357.pdf
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 28, 2008
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      Here is information on timely new energy policy reports:
      "Managing Transport Challenges When Oil Prices Rise" ( http://www.ltsa.govt.nz/research/reports/357.pdf ), by McCormick Rankin Cagney, et al, for the New Zealand Transport Agency. Newspaper articles summarizing this study are available at http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominionpost/4664442a6000.html and http://www.nzherald.co.nz/category/story.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=10528808 .
      This report provides practical guidance to central, regional, and local government agencies on how to manage the transport challenges associated with rising oil prices. It provides detailed information on:
      •  Future Transport Fuel Price – Various forecasts are combined to model future transport fuel prices. This suggests that average oil prices will staying around $110 USD/barrel in the near future, but will increase to approximately $150 USD/barrel in 2012.  
      •  Future Travel Demands - Models are used to predict future travel demands, taking into account fuel prices, economic growth, vehicle ownership, workforce participation, and disposable income. Under the average fuel price scenario total New Zealand vehicle travel declines below current levels until approximately 2016, after which the combined effects of population and economic growth will cause vehicle travel to increase.
      • Optimal Responses to High Oil Costs – Various responses are identified and evaluated in terms of their ability to reduce economic risks and help achieve other planning objectives. The recommended strategies result in a more efficient and diverse transport system, providing various economic, social and environmental benefits.               ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
      "Addressing Climate Change Without Impairing the U.S. Economy: The Economics and Environmental Science of Combining a Carbon-Based Tax and Tax Relief" ( http://www.climatetaskforce.org/pdf/CTF_CarbonTax_Earth_Spgs.pdf ), by Robert Shapiro, Nam Pham and Arun Malik for The U.S. Climate Task Force.
      This study used the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Energy Modeling System (NEMS) to evaluate the economic impacts of a Carbon Tax ( http://www.vtpi.org/carbontax.pdf ) that begins at $14 per ton of CO2 equivalent and increases to $50 per ton, with 90% of the revenues returned to households and businesses in tax relief and the remaining 10% of revenues used to support energy and climate-related research and development, and new technology deployment. They conclude that the U.S. can reduce climate change emissions by 30% and would only reduce 2010-to-2030 GDP growth from 33.6% to 33.4%.
      "Is The U.S. On The Path To The Lowest Motor Vehicle Fatalities In Decades?" ( http://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/2027.42/60424/1/100969.pdf ), by Michael Sivak for the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute.
      This study found that a 2.7% decline in vehicle travel caused by fuel price increases and a weak economy during 2007-08 resulted in much larger 17.9% to 22.1% month-to-month declines in traffic deaths, probably due to disproportionate reductions in vehicle travel by lower income drivers (who tend to be young and old, and therefore higher than average risk), and speed reductions to save fuel.
      "Carbon Taxes: Tax What You Burn, Not What You Earn" ( http://www.vtpi.org/carbontax.pdf ), by Todd Litman.
      This paper describes carbon taxes in general and the British Columbia in particular. It answers common questions and evaluates criticisms of the tax. A separate paper, "Improving BC’s Carbon Tax: Changes and Enhancements To Increase Effectiveness and Equity" ( http://www.vtpi.org/carbontax_improvement.pdf ) describes ways to address some of these criticisms.
      We recently updated our reports, "Appropriate Response To Rising Fuel Prices" ( www.vtpi.org/fuelprice.pdf ) and "Smart Emission Reduction Strategies" ( www.vtpi.org/ster.pdf ) which discuss various factors to consider when evaluating transportation energy policies.
      The Victoria Transport Policy Institute is an independent research organization dedicated to developing innovative solutions to transportation problems. The VTPI website (http://www.vtpi.org ) has many resources addressing a wide range of transport planning and policy issues. VTPI also provides consulting services. Please let us know if you have comments or questions about our resources, or if you would like to be removed from our email list. And please pass this information on to others who may find it useful.

      Todd Alexander Litman
      Victoria Transport Policy Institute (www.vtpi.org)
      Phone & Fax 250-360-1560
      1250 Rudlin Street, Victoria, BC, V8V 3R7, CANADA
      “Efficiency - Equity - Clarity”

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