MIT focused on BAU rather than BTB

Well, when it comes to the future of America’s automotive fleet, it is clear that at least part of the Massachusetts Institute for Technology can’t get its mind around the reality of change in the transportation system.  They are focused on ‘Business As Usual’ (BAU) rather than the Business To Be (BTB).

 In Factor of Two: Halving the Fuel Consumption of New US Automobiles by 2035, the MIT researchers made a series of assumptions that are, well, simply atrocious:

  • Gasoline at $1.85 for the next 30 years.  Hmmm … at my local gas station, well above $3.00. I, not just for one, don’t expect to see below $2 gasoline ever again.
  • That, come 2035, small trucks / McSUVs will represent the same percentage of the personal vehicle fleet as today.  Hmmm … at $1.85, I guess I can understand making this assumption. But at $5, 7, 10 per gallon?
  • Not including emergent options, such as plug-in-hybrid vehicles (PHEVs), in the analysis.

 While there is value to the work, these assumptions are so laughable that it is difficult to take any of it seriously.

Hat tip to Lou Grinzo at Cost of Energy for bringing attention to this. (Lou has written a more extensive discussion.)

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