Oil and the Internal Combustion Engine: End of an Era?

Friday, February 3, 2006, 12:00pm to 1:00pm PST
Dan Sperling, University of California at Davis

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Abstract: Today’s vehicles are vast improvements over the Model T of a hundred years ago. They are much more reliable, comfortable, safer, efficient, powerful, and cleaner burning. But in some ways, they’ve barely changed. They are functionally identical and continue to consume large amounts of energy. Why haven’t they changed more? This talk will address the future of combustion engines and petroleum fuels, and what it means for transportation funding, air pollution, climate change, and the future of the US auto industry.

Speaker Biography: Daniel Sperling is Professor of Civil Engineering and Environmental Science and Policy, and founding Director of the Institute of Transportation Studies (ITS-Davis) at the University of California, Davis. He is also co-director of UC Davis's Hydrogen Pathways Program and New Mobility Center. Dr. Sperling is recognized as a leading international expert on transportation technology assessment, energy and environmental aspects of transportation, and transportation policy. In the past 20 years, he has authored or co-authored over 200 technical papers and reports and eight books. He was selected as a lifetime National Associate of The National Academies in 2004, is founding chair and emeritus member of the Alternative Transportation Fuels Committee of the U.S. Transportation Research Board, and serves on many advisory committees and Boards of Directors for environmentally-oriented organizations. He consults for international automotive and energy companies, major environmental groups, and several national governments. Dr. Sperling has testified numerous times to the US Congress and various government agencies, and provided keynote presentations and invited talks in recent years at international conferences in Japan, Europe, and North America.

For more information about Prof. Sperling: http://its.ucdavis.edu/people/faculty/sperling/