Technology Innovations in Green Transport
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The paper uses the case study of Limpopo province to discuss technology innovations in green transport in South Africa with respect to the reduction of global greenhouse emission through technology innovation. South Africa’s emission from fuel combustion is the world’s 15th largest in forms of CO emission because it contributes about 1.2% of global emissions. In a submission from the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) on the impact of greenhouse emissions stated that companies are required to be innovative to reduce the carbon emission levels in South Africa. Literature on road transport in South Africa shows that road transport is the fastest growing source of greenhouse gas emissions, accounting for 19% of global energy consumption. The policy to promote an integrated public transport in municipalities is in line with the National Development Plan and the White Paper on National Climate Change Response. This requires innovative technology that promotes carbon trading markets such as taxi recapitalisation programmes and carbon tax on new vehicles. The study analysed the factors influencing green technology innovations in South Africa with specific reference to Limpopo province green transportation study. The methodology used to unpack innovative technology in South Africa discusses green technology in Limpopo province in the context of greenhouse gases emission reduction innovative technologies in the transport sector with respect to sustainable fuels, energy efficient systems and smart information as well as hybrid technologies. The study advances arguments on technologies for engine and propulsion systems, alternative energy sources, navigation technologies, cargo handling systems, heating and cooling vehicles, road and rail vehicles and maritime transportation with respect to innovations as well as battery charging systems, engine oil disposal etc. The findings shows that no single trajectory of technology innovation in green transport will suffice but technological innovations that improve fuel economy and transition from fossil fuels to cleaner fuel alternatives. The study in Limpopo province showed that green transport innovations must not obscure the role of non-technological innovations in reducing emissions, but the two should be tackled with green transport value chain as a whole.
Keywords: Green transport, Technology innovations, Greenhouse gas emissions, Reducing emissions, Green transport value chain
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