Steering Toward Greener Transportation

17:22 minutes

Countries like England, France, and India are setting targets for switching from gas-powered vehicles to electric. Meanwhile in the United States, as Tesla installs more charging stations for long distance travelers, the Trump Administration is taking steps to roll back fuel economy standards.

Is the future of transportation inevitably electric—or even sustainable? How will electric grids cope if the adoption of plug-in electric vehicles rises? And is there a role for autonomous vehicles in reducing our transportation footprint?

[With rising temperatures, infrastructure falters.]

Jessika Trancik, associate professor at the Institute for Data, Systems and Society at MIT, and Kara Kockelman, a professor of Civil, Architectural, and Environmental Engineering at the University of Texas, discuss the challenges ahead for more electric vehicles, reducing emissions, and generally lowering the environmental cost of getting around.

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Segment Guests

Jessika Trancik

Jessika Trancik is a professor in MIT’s Institute for Data, Systems, and Society in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Kara Kockelman

Kara Kockelman is a professor of Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering at the University of Texas-Austin in Austin, Texas.

Meet the Producer

About Christie Taylor

Christie Taylor was a producer for Science Friday. Her days involved diligent research, too many phone calls for an introvert, and asking scientists if they have any audio of that narwhal heartbeat.

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