May 7, 2010

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


Gregory Gould, ITS-Davis Graduate Researcher


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.

Biographical Sketch

Gregory Gould is a Ph.D. candidate in the UC Davis Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering and is also affiliated with the UC Davis Institute of Transportation Studies. He received both his B.S. in Chemical Engineering and M.S. in Resource Economics and Policy from the University of Maine. Greg’s current research interest is goods movement, where he primarily focuses on emission modeling, policy for more sustainable goods movement and land use. He recently co-authored a report for the Pew Climate Change Center on GHG emissions and mitigation measures for global air and marine transportation and has also published research on bicycle traffic modeling and household based carbon trading. After graduating this spring, Greg will join the Natural Resources Defense Council in Santa Monica, CA as a Transportation and Air Quality Science Fellow.