New NRDC Study on Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicles

Illustrated by Daniel McCoy, University of Washington

NRDC and the Electric Power Research Institute participated in a National Press Club event this morning to release 2 reports on the environmental impact of plug-in hybrids. The 2 reports are part of a joint study that evaluate (1) nationwide GHG impacts of 3 different PHEV penetrations under 3 different grid emissions and intensity scenarios and (2) the conventional air pollutant impacts of large-scale PHEV penetration. GHG reductions in addition to conventional (non-pluggable) hybrids are found under all scenarios where CO2 constraints are placed the grid. There is also the potential for air quality improvements where there are sufficient controls on power plant emissions.

All study materials (reports, executive summaries, press release, FAQ) available at

NRDC’s plug-in hybrid factsheet can be found at

Here's one of the key charts from our factsheet.


P.S. NRDC's contribution to this study and even the text of this post are thanks to my friend and colleague, Luke Tonachel, who also happens to be a new dad. So congrats to him on all fronts!

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