Pilot testing will take place within the living lab’s study area—the NYC metro area, the Albany NY region, and the 150-mile freight corridor that connects them. NYC is a dense megalopolis with heavy congestion and multimodal transport. These areas are interdependent and linked by rail, waterways, and trucking. The conditions in the study area represent the needs of large and mid-size metropolitan areas, those most in need of innovative EEL initiatives. The study area offers ideal conditions for an influential living lab.
The chief tenet of this proposal is that EEL can only be achieved through a behavior-based policymaking approach that fosters the adoption of energy efficient supply-side Technologies and Operations (Tech/Ops) and uses Freight Demand Management (FDM) to induce changes in freight demand patterns that reduce energy use and support those energy-efficient Tech/Ops. In this way, policymakers could ensure a long-lasting communion of energy efficient Tech/Ops—Smart Cities, Smart Freight Mobility, connected/autonomous trucks, crowd deliveries, and the like—and the energy saving demand changes—changes in time of delivery, mode, shipment size, frequency, or destination of the delivery—produced by FDM. In addition to producing large energy savings, this approach sets the conditions for Tech/Ops to be financially sustainable in the longer term.
The main goal is to fully exploit behavior-based policymaking approach to reduce freight energy use. This approach exploits synergies between novel supply-side Tech/Ops, and energy efficient freight demand changes that can be realized using FDM. This approach will use the living lab to: gain insight into barriers to energy efficiency; identify ways to overcome those barriers; and demonstrate in real-life the power of EEL initiatives to stakeholders. To achieve this goal, policymaking must: broaden the focus of energy policy, exploit synergies between EEL initiatives, develop suitable analytical tools, gain insight into how to foster energy reducing behavior changes in the participants of supply chains, produce appropriate policy procedures, and foster a transformation of supply chains. The project will the FOA’s and AOI #2’s goals as it will: integrate innovative EEL initiatives into a region’s Smart Mobility environment; demonstrate how policy measures can support successful implementation of EEL initiatives while accounting for local conditions; and develop tools and procedures to allow practitioners assess ROI of these initiatives.
The chief outcomes of the project will be: (1) Produce the first policy guidebook that will provide practitioners with actionable information and a practice-ready approach to foster EEL initiatives at the city, MPO, and State levels; (2) Produce an Integrated Transport-Energy Model (ITEM) to: estimate the impacts of policy measures on adoption of Tech/Ops and demand changes, and accurately quantify energy and GHG impact of EEL initiatives; (3) Broaden focus of freight energy policy from one that concentrates its efforts on carriers to on that focuses on all supply chain participants, encompassing both freight’s supply and demand; and (4) Exploit synergies derived from the use of two of more EEL initiatives to create reinforcing effects, instead of isolated efforts.