Conventional, Battery-Powered, and Other Alternative Fuel Vehicles: Sustainability Assessment

  • Lambros K. Mitropoulos
  • Panos D. Prevedouros
Part of the Green Energy and Technology book series (GREEN)


The substantial impacts of transportation on environment, society, and economy strongly urge the incorporation of sustainability into transportation planning. Major developments that enhance transportation sustainability include alternative fuels, electric drive and other novel technologies for vehicle propulsion. This chapter presents a sustainability framework that enables the assessment of transportation vehicle characteristics. Identified indicators are grouped into five sustainability dimensions (environment, technology, energy, economy, and users). The method joins life cycle impacts and a set of quantified indicators to assess the sustainability performance of seven popular light-duty vehicles and two types of transit buses. The hybrid diesel electric bus received the highest sustainability index and the internal combustion engine vehicle the lowest. Fuel cell and hybrid electric vehicles were found to have the highest sustainability index among all passenger vehicles. The sustainability performance of some new technologies currently suffers from limitations in engine and battery performance, comfort and convenience, and availability of charging stations.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lambros K. Mitropoulos
    • 1
  • Panos D. Prevedouros
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Civil and Environmental EngineeringUniversity of Hawaii at ManoaHonoluluUSA

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