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Decarbonisation of transport emissions is essential to meet climate targets. For road transport, currently available technologies are battery electric vehicles and hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles. Battery vehicles are more established than hydrogen; both could deliver the emissions reduction required. However, battery vehicles are considerably heavier than equivalent hydrogen vehicles, which are in turn slightly heavier than internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles; a heavier vehicle will have a bigger impact on road wear and associated costs. Here we carry out a desk-based analysis, developed in 2021–2022, examining the impact and cost of the increased weight of zero emissions vehicles on road wear in an entire national vehicle fleet. The novelty is in the first quantified application of the long-understood relationship between axle load and road wear to the problem of the additional weight of zero emissions vehicles. This leads to an approximate quantification of additional costs of road maintenance as the vehicle fleet transitions to zero emissions vehicles. We examine these in four scenarios: all battery vehicles; all hydrogen vehicles; a combination; current ICE vehicles for comparison. We find 20–40% additional road wear associated with battery vehicles compared to ICE vehicles; hydrogen leads to a 6% increase. This is overwhelmingly caused by large vehicles – buses, heavy goods vehicles. Smaller vehicles make a negligible contribution. Governmental bodies liable for road maintenance may wish to set weight limits on roads, require additional axles on heavier vehicles, or construct new roads to a higher standard, to decrease road wear.
|Number of pages||14|
|Journal||Clean Technologies and Environmental Policy|
|Early online date||5 Dec 2022|
|Publication status||E-pub ahead of print - 5 Dec 2022|
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- 2 Finished
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Haszeldine, S., Jia, J. & Wilkinson, M.
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HyStorPor - Hydrogen Storage in Porous Media
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