CSE Shapes Conversation Around EV Incentives at Annual TRB Meeting


By Center for Sustainable Energy

March 27, 2019

Co-authored by Brett Williams

At the Transportation Research Board (TRB) annual meeting in January, Brett Williams, CSE’s senior principal transportation advisor, spoke about electric vehicle (EV) incentive programs, their impacts, and the consumers they are influencing. A program of the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine, TRB provides a platform for over 13,000 of the world’s leaders in transportation to share research, perspectives and best practices – all of which may inform transportation policy at the state and federal level.  His involvement with the organization allowed him to serve multiple functions throughout the 2019 conference.

  • Now serving a second term on TRB’s Alternative Fuels and Technologies Committee, Brett helps coordinate peer-reviews submissions for the annual meeting and the Transportation Research Record Journal.
  • Brett also structured a conference panel session around three accepted papers focusing on the importance and effectiveness of incentives and other policies for growing the EV market. His role in shaping the session allowed him to set the stage and facilitate the conversation, drawing upon CSE’s experience administering incentive programs.
  • Nick Pallonetti and Brett’s co-authored paper on the greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reductions associated with Clean Vehicle Rebate Project (CVRP)  was one of the few submissions selected (via a peer review process) for presentation. The research uses program-specific data to estimate CVRP’s impact in reducing GHG emissions; this participant-specific data may yield more accurate estimates than the existing research, which relies upon average assumptions of participant behavior. When compared with CARB’s existing methodology, CSE’s research finds greater emissions reductions (19‒21% higher).
  • Finally, while in DC, Brett presented on Targeting Outreach to Rebate-Essential Consumers to the International EV Advisory Council. This research characterizes consumers who would not have purchased or leased an electric vehicle without the cash incentive from CVRP. Rebate-essential consumers were found to more likely be from limited-income backgrounds, and place significance on financial savings over environmental benefits. This research was also presented at the EVS 31 conference and is currently shaping CVRP’s outreach tactics.

Brett’s ongoing involvement in TRB brings to light the research conducted by CSE and CVRP and the important role of incentives in driving the EV market. His multifaceted involvement in such meetings of transportation influencers enriches CSE’s administration of EV incentive programs and ability to accelerate transportation electrification.