Clean Transportation

5% of the world’s total gross domestic product

One of the world’s largest and most essential industries, transportation and its infrastructure are not only vital components for moving people and goods, but also play a huge role in the modern economy. The transportation sector has a huge impact on employment, directly hiring around 10 million people worldwide. It also accounts for around 5% of the world’s total gross domestic product (GDP).

However, despite its essential role in society, the transportation sector faces numerous challenges. It is one of the largest sources of CO2 emissions (along with electricity and heat generation) and faces one of the most difficult journeys to achieve decarbonisation, due to its distributed nature and the convenience of using fossil fuels.

The industry is seeing astounding and rapid development in a variety of new technologies to face this challenge. Electric Vehicles (EVs) in particular have seen massive growth over the previous decade, and development within hydrogen fuel cells and renewable fuels has also become more regular.

But what exactly are the defining technologies that will shape the future of the transportation industry, and how can we ensure that they succeed?

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The transportation trends that are defining tomorrow

Electric Vehicles & Infrastructure

Electric Vehicles (EVs) are a fundamental pillar in the path to a net-zero transportation sector. According to the IEA, EVs make up one category which is ontrack to meet its Net Zero Emissions targets. Alongside this, EV manufacturing is one of the fastest growing areas for green jobs, and the annual demand for Electric Vehicles among consumers is hitting new records every year.

As demand for Electric Vehicles grows, so must the infrastructure to support it. As a result, governments around the world have implemented their strategies to accelerate the development of EV Infrastructure (including charging infrastructure), helping to facilitate the ongoing growth of the market.

Hydrogen & Fuel Cells

Due to concerns around the sustainability and safety of lithium-ion batteries, significant research is taking place to assess alternative batteries for EV manufacturing. Hydrogen fuel cell batteries are considered to be a much more advantageous option, as they can offer better range, occupy less space, and cause significantly less harm to the environment.

Hydrogen technology holds the potential to decarbonise several transportation and mobility applications. Alongside powering fuel-cell EVs (including cars, trucks, and trains), renewable hydrogen can also play a role in generating synthetic renewable fuels for ships and airplanes.

Learn more about Hydrogen

Renewable Fuels

Renewable fuels refer to fuels that come from a variety of different renewable resources. Examples of renewable fuels include biofuels and hydrogen fuels.

They play a vital role in decarbonising a variety of transportation applications, including cars, trucks, ships, and airplanes. They also provide a sustainable, biodegradable, and non-toxic alternative to fossil fuels. Additionally, with the rising cost of fossil fuels and their eventual depletion, the case for renewable fuels has never been as clear.

A 2020 publication from the IEA concluded that renewable fuels can make an important contribution to decarbonising the transport sector and that reducing emissions for the sector cannot be achieved by one measure alone.

Finding leaders within the transportation sector

The transportation sector is undergoing significant change. As such, it requires leaders and a workforce which can keep up with the industry’s demands and ensure that it continues along its path to decarbonisation.

Businesses operating within the transportation sector have ever-changing challenges and requirements to locate ambitious leaders who can drive their organisation forward. Here at Gibson Watts, we proudly work with a variety of forward-thinking businesses in transportation. We provide an in-depth knowledge of the industry and connect our clients with the very best leaders.