Transportation

Prototype electric and fuel cell vehicles cruise by wind turbines. Photo credit: Dennis Schroeder / NREL
The transportation sector is responsible for 30 percent of carbon emissions and consumes 70 percent of the oil used in the United States.
The Transportation Program works to reduce energy use and carbon pollution through policies that improve vehicle efficiency and promote clean fuels.

About the Program

New technologies and fuels have the potential to slash transportation oil use, air pollution, and greenhouse gas emissions. Improvements to conventional vehicles—including better engines and transmissions and strong, lightweight materials—can make cars and trucks cleaner while saving drivers money at the pump. Next-generation electric vehicles entering the market could eventually transform the way we drive and the fuels we use. Alternatives to petroleum—such as advanced biofuels, electricity, and hydrogen—have the potential to cut emissions and enhance energy security.

The Transportation Program makes grants that promote innovative state and federal policies to speed commercialization of clean transportation technologies and fuels. We favor performance-based policies—such as fuel economy and greenhouse gas standards for vehicles—that guide markets toward cleaner solutions. Our work is driven by the active support of an array of voices—from environmental and consumer groups to national security and labor—and helps to keep the American auto industry competitive in a global market and to keep jobs here at home.