May 7, 2010


Modeling Locomotive Emissions: Creating a New Spatially Resolved Model and Evaluating the Effectiveness of California's Trade Corridors Improvement Fund (TCIF)


This talk will address the challenges of modeling air pollutant emissions from goods movement. The talk will describe the findings from two projects undertaken for my dissertation research. The first part describes the development of a new GIS based locomotive emission model for the California Air Resources Board including the challenges associated with creating an emission model for goods movement when data are closely guarded by private firms and the methods developed for passenger transportation do not always apply. The second project presents a critical review of the modeling used to justify public financing of projects targeting increased use of freight rail to reduce air pollutant emissions under California’s Trade Corridors Improvement Fund (TCIF). This case study highlights the problems associated with the lack of standard goods movement modeling methods and the difficulty in modeling goods movement. An alternative framework for reducing air pollutant emissions from goods movement which avoids difficult, if not impossible, modeling problems is discussed.

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