December 10, 2007
It seems the global oil market isn't immune to at least one law of nature: The apex predator has the most voracious appetite.
The New York Times reports that the very oil-exporting countries that are experiencing remarkable domestic economic growth because of the global demand for oil may soon become victims of their own success.
Experts say ... several of the world's most important suppliers may need to start importing oil within a decade to power all the new cars, houses and businesses they are buying and creating with their oil wealth. ... The report [by Canada-based CIBC World Markets] said "soaring internal rates of oil consumption" in Russia, in Mexico and in member states of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries would reduce crude exports as much as 2.5 million barrels a day by the end of the decade.
While unstable, undemocratic regimes are one thing (and not all oil exporters fall into the category), no one is going to begrudge the actual citizens of developing, oil-exporting nations the affluence and quality of life improvements that might come from global demand for the black gold burbling deep below their jurisdictional terra firma. Certainly, the United States, which relies on oil to drive its own economic engine, can't. (The New York Times says that although U.S. demand is flat, it continues to account for nearly one-quarter of the world's oil consumption.)
That said, reports of demand strains should raise the antennae of any American consumer who finds her purse or his wallet increasingly light after filling up at the pump. Internal domestic demand in oil states could tighten supply even further, especially if production capacity were to remain constant. Ergo, prices at the pump in Peoria are given even less reason to decrease as the number of oil-exporting countries gets comparatively smaller.
And for those of us who find it troubling that our addiction to oil props up and sustains many of the same rogue regimes that threaten American interests at home and abroad, the idea that supply will be in even fewer hands -- not necessarily of Uncle Sam's choosing -- is highly problematic.
Luckily for an oil-addicted America, our options aren't simply to acquiesce. Aside from only pursuing the politically charged (and depending who you ask, the environmentally damaging) option of opening up new areas for exploration, we have other options. Good options.
Among the best (we think) is something that Cascadia Center at Discovery Institute has been pressing for quite some time -- the electrification of transportation through the use of innovative vehicle technology (plug-in hybrid electric vehicles).
While not a panacea, supporting the development and use of vehicles that, with the flip of a switch, dramatically reduce our dependence on oil for transportation and simultaneously address environmental concerns, is perhaps the single best option we have. And it might work for our neighbor to the south too. In Mexico, according to The New York Times, the number of cars has "nearly doubled...in the last decade, and gasoline consumption is growing 5 percent a year."
The answer, of course, isn't to stop driving, but to change the way we power our vehicles. (Don't just take our advice; none other than America's de facto international affairs professor, columnist Thomas Friedman, writes about it often, including in this column one week ago.)
Then I got together with three engineering undergrads who helped launch the Vehicle Design Summit...These kids are building a hyper-efficient car, which, they hope, "will demonstrate a 95 percent reduction in embodied energy, materials and toxicity from cradle to cradle to grave" and provide "200 m.p.g. energy equivalency or better." The Linux of cars!
We'll keep watching closely reports and analyses about global oil consumption habits. But we'll also keep pushing our ideas on electrifying transportation. Wouldn't it be nice to know that studies and reports about consumption demand or instability in oil states weren't such a concern for the United States? And wouldn't it, paraphrasing former CIA director, R. James Woolsey, be even better to know that driving to get groceries and that your daily commute didn't help fund both sides of the war on terror?
TECHNORATI TAGS: >OIL, FOREIGN OIL, OIL SUPPLY, UNITED STATES, TERRORISM, ALTERNATIVE FUELS, ELECTRICITY, PLUG-IN HYBRID ELECTRIC VEHICLES, JAMES WOOLSEY, CASCADIA CENTER>
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April 6, 2007
Last updated August 25, 2008
The research, it just keeps coming. On this page, we'll compile links to key studies and reports on innovation in transportation.
MANAGING, PLANNING & FUNDING TRANSPORTATION
Cascadia Center Reports
"Lessons In Public-Private Partnerships & Climate Change: What British Columbia Taught California, And What Washington Can Still Learn," 10/07.
"A Tale Of Three Cities: How San Diego, Denver and Vancouver, B.C. Raised Major Regional Funds For Transportation," Doug Hurley, Cascadia Center For Regional Development, 9/06.
"Travel Value Pricing: Better Traffic Operations Management & New Revenue For The Puget Sound Region," John S. Niles, for Cascadia Center, 4/06.
"Transportation Working Group Recommendations," Transportation Working Group, Cascadia Center For Regional Development, 2/15/05.
Transportation Working Group background, members, and resource book.
"An Institutional Conundrum - A Simplified Overview Of Metropolitan Institutional Reform Applied To Transportation In The Puget Sound Region," Deb Eddy, Cascadia Center For Regional Development, 2004.
"How Do We Get There From Here? A Transportation Future For The Puget Sound Region," Bruce Agnew & Bruce Chapman, Cascadia Center For Regional Development, 2003. View the video, as aired on Seattle Channel, 5/20/05.
"Just Pricing: The Distributional Effects Of Congestion Pricing and Sales Taxes," Brian Taylor, UCLA Institute Of Transportation Studies; Lisa Schweitzer, School Of Policy, Planning And Development, University Of Southern California, 5/08
"Transportation For Tomorrow," National Surface Transportation Policy & Revenue Study Commission, 1/08.
"Running On Empty - 2007 Annual Report," Washington Transportation Commission, 12/07.
"Building New Roads Through Public-Private Partnerships: Frequently Asked Questions," Leonard C. Gilroy, Robert W. Poole, Jr., Peter Samuel, Geoffrey Segal, Reason Foundation, 11/07.
"Review Of Congressional Earmarks Within Department Of Transportation Programs," Office Of The Inspector General, U.S. DOT, 9/7/07.
"Case Studies Of Transportation Public-Private Partnerships In The United States," Aecom Consult Team, for U.S. DOT, Federal Highway Administration, 7/7/07.
"Case Studies Of Transportation Public-Private Partnerships Around The World," Aecom Consult Team, for U.S. DOT, Federal Highway Administration, 7/7/07.
Draft Vision 2040 Puget Sound Regional Council, 7/07.
"Lake Washington Urban Partnership," Washington State Department of Transportation, 4/30/07.
"Report On SR 520 Bridge Replacement And HOV Project Funding Alternatives," Seattle-Northwest Securities Corporation, Montague DeRose & Associates, LLC, 3/28/07.
"Destination 2030 - Taking An Alternative Route," Washington State Transportation Center/Booz Allen Hamilton (For King County Executive), 3/05/07.
"Overview Of National Strategy To Reduce Congestion On America's Transportation Network," USDOT, 3/07.
"Public-Private Partnerships For Toll Highways," Robert W. Poole, Reason Foundation, Testimony To U.S. House Committee On Transportation & Infrastructure, Subcommittee On Highways & Transit, 2/13/07.
"Report On The Transportation Innnovative Partnerships Program," Washington Transportation Commission, 1/07.
"Regional Transportation Commission Final Report," Regional Transportation Commission (of Puget Sound), 12/31/06.
"Washington Transportation Plan 2007-2026," Washington Transportation Commission, 11/06.
"Reducing Congestion In Atlanta: A Bold New Approach To Mobility," Robert W. Poole, Reason Foundation, 11/06.
"Public-Private Partnerships & The Development Of Transport Infrastructure: Trends On Both Sides Of The Atlantic," Benjamin G. Perez, PB Consult Inc., James W. March, Federal Highway Administration; 9/06.
"Transportation Finance At The Ballot Box: Voters Support Increased Investment & Choice," Center For Transportation Excellence, 8/06.
"Building Roads To Reduce Congestion In America's Cities: How Much & At What Cost?," David Hartgren, M. Gregory Fields & Robert W. Poole, Reason Foundation, 8/06; (WA state congestion analysis, from study).
"Why Mobility Matters," Ted Balaker, Reason Foundation, 8/06.
"Current Toll Road Activity In The U.S.: A Survey & Analysis," Benjamin Pereze, Steve Lockwood, for U.S. DOT, Federal Highway Administration, 8/06.
"Remarks Of Pat Jacobsen - CEO, Greater Vancouver Transportation Authority - To House & Senate Transportation Committees of Washington State Legislature, 1/19/06.
"Traffic Congestion & Reliability: Trends & Advanced Strategies For Congestion Mitigation," Cambridge Systematics & Texas Transportation Institute (for Federal Highway Administration), 9/1/05.
"2005 Urban Mobility Report," Texas Transportation Institute, 2005.
"Unclogging America's Highways - Effective Relief For Highway Bottlenecks," American Highway Users Alliance, 2/04
HUBS, CORRIDORS & GATEWAYS
" Canada: A Macroeconomic Study of the United States' Most Important Trade Partner,"U.S. Department of Agriculture Economic Research Service, Updated 9/15/06
Canadian Embassy State Trade Fact Sheet 2006, Canadian Embassy, 2006.
Canada/U.S. Regional Economies, Canadian-American Border Trade Alliance.
"Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative: The Basics," U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
Resolution Of The West Coast Corridor Coalition, 11/03.
"From B.C. To B.C. - And Beyond - the Story Of The West Coast Corridor Coalition."
"Spatial Concepts & Cross Border Governance Strategies," Susan E. Clarke, University of Colorado, (presented to EURA Conference On Urban & Spatial Policies), 4/02.
"The Character of Non-Governmental Transborder Organizations In The Cascadia Region of North America," Lawrence Douglas Taylor Hansen, Revista Mexicana De Estudios Canadienses, 2/02.
SURFACE & MARINE TRANSPORTATION
Cascadia Center Reports
"Testimony In Support Of King County Passenger-Only Ferry District," Matt Rosenberg, 11/13/07.
"Alaskan Way Replacement: Alternative Approaches," Ove Arup & Partners, for Cascadia Center, 11/06.
"A New Vision For Developing Transit For Livable Cities." Enrique Penalosa, former
mayor of Bogota, Columbia speaks at a Cascadia Center co-sponsored event on implementation of Bogota's TransMileno Bus Rapid Transit system. Seattle Channel video, 9/27/06.
"Statement of Tom Till to Washington Transportation Commission On Amtrak & Related Issues, Including Availability of Federal Funding," 1/18/06.
"King County Passenger-Only Ferries Project Briefing Paper," IBI Group, for King County Executive, 11/7/07.
Puget Sound Regional Council Passenger-Only Ferry Study, 2007 (ongoing).
Chapter 7, "I-405 Plan: Transit and HOV", in "I-405 Congestion Relief & Bus Rapid Transit Projects - Final Recommendations Report," WSDOT. (See "I-405 BRT Service").
BNSF Corridor Preservation Study, Puget Sound Regional Council, 2/27/07.
Statewide Rail Capacity and System Needs Study, Washington State Transportation Commission, 12/06.
Columbia River Crossing Project Alternatives Page.
Willamette River Ferry Feasibility Study, City Of Portland Department of Transportation, 2006.
Waterborne Transit Policy Study, King County Department of Transportation, August, 2005.
Rich Passage Passenger-Only Ferry Study, Phase I, WSDOT, Federal Transit Administration, 4/05.
"Report Card For America's Infrastructure," American Society Of Civil Engineers, 2005.
TECHNOLOGY & ENERGY
Cascadia Center Reports
Speaker Presentations At Cascadia/Microsoft/Idaho National Laboratory "Beyond Oil: Transforming Transportation" conference, 9/4/08 and 9/5/08, Redmond, Wash. (Topics included electric vehicles, plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, renewable energy, traffic management systems and technology, transit. Many of these files are very large and may take several minutes to open/download depending on your internet connection).
"Greening The Highway From Baja To B.C. - A Discussion Brief," Matt Rosenberg, 9/19/07.
"Replacing Oil With Electricity And Biofuels In Transportation: The Convergence Of Technology And Public Policy," Steve Marshall, 8/7/07.
Speaker Presentations at Cascadia-Microsoft "Jump Start To A Secure Clean Energy Future" Conference on Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles and Alternative Fuels, 5/7/07
Roger Duncan, Austin Energy/Plug-In Partners (4.78 MB)
Mark Duvall, Electric Power Research Institute (1.13 MB)
Andrew A. Frank, University of California/Davis (1.33 MB)
K.C. Golden, Climate Solutions (1.81 MB)
David Horner, U.S. Dept. of Transportation (700 KB)
Michael Kintner-Meyer, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (1.91 MB)
Felix Kramer, CalCars.org (708 KB)
John M. Miller, Maxwell Technologies (496 KB)
Philip Mote, University of Washington (3.88 MB)
Tim Murphy, Idaho National Laboratory (674 KB)
Vic Parrish, Energy Northwest (494 KB)
Bill Reinert, Toyota USA (2.00 MB)
Bill Rogers, Idaho National Laboratory (1.05 MB)
Greg Rock, Green Car Company (82.9 KB)
Neil Schuster, Intelligent Transportation Society Of America (2.14 MB)
Rogelio Sullivan, U.S. Dept. of Energy (1.08 MB)
John Wellinghoff, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (4.23 MB)
Nick Zielinski, General Motors/Chevy Volt (1.79 MB)
"Basic Research Needs: Catalysis For Energy," (report from U.S. Dept. Of Energy Basic Energy Sciences Workshop), 8/07.
"Environmental Assessment of Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicles," Electric Power Research Institute, Natural Resources Defense Council, 7/07.
" Joint Science Academies Statement on Growth and Responsibility; Sustainability, Energy Efficiency and Climate Protection, for G8 Summit, 5/07.
"Fourth Assessment Report of Intergovernmental Panel On Climate Change," United Nations, 4/07/07.
Annual Energy Outlook 2007 - With Projections To 2030," U.S. Department of Energy, Energy Information Administration, 2/07.
Impacts Assessment of Plug-in Hybrid Vehicles On Electric Utilities and Regional U.S. Power Grids; Michael Kintner-Meyer, Kevin Schneider, Robert Pratt; Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, 12/06.
"Alternative Fuels Study: A Report To Congress On Policy Options For Increasing The Use Of Alternative Fuels In Transit Vehicles," Federal Transit Administration, U.S. Dept. of Transportation, 12/06.
"Intelligent Transportation Systems Regional Architecture", Puget Sound Regional Council, IBI Group, 8/21/06.
"Future Visions," Washington Transportation Plan Update Process, WSDOT/Washington Transportation Commission, 6/17/05. (See pp. 27-34, "Intelligent Transportation Systems").
GridWise Program Overview, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.
Technological Basis For GridWise, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.
Primer On Vehicle-Infrastructure Integration, Intelligent Transportation Society Of America.
TECHNORATI TAGS: TRANSPORTATION, RESEARCH, TRANSPORTATION GOVERNANCE, TRAFFIC CONGESTION, TRANSIT, BUS RAPID TRANSIT, PASSENGER-ONLY FERRIES, TOLLS, PUBLIC PRIVATE PARTNERSHIPS, SEATTLE, PUGET SOUND, CASCADIA, WEST COAST CORRIDOR, FRIEGHT, INTELLIGENT TRANSPORTATION SYSTEMS, ALTERNATIVE ENERGY, ALTERNATIVE FUELS, PLUG-IN HYBRID ELECTRIC VEHICLES>
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