UKERC Phase 4: Energy for Mobility

UKRI Energy Programme

ECI lead: Dr Christian Brand

The energy for mobility theme of UKERC Phase 4 projects focuses on where transport decarbonisation efforts are generating acute technological and governance challenges for the energy system, especially at the local level.

The transport sector is responsible for 40% of UK final energy consumption, 98% of which is fuelled by oil. Energy consumption in the transport sector peaked in 2007, but has increased by almost 6% since 2013. Sale of large cars such as SUVs are increasing at a much faster rate than EVs. Transport is simply the roadblock to decarbonisation.

Working with partners from policy, industry and NGOs, UKERC's whole systems approach guides six core research projects in the Energy for Mobility theme on:

  • Readiness of the grid for EVs
  • Planning and governance of grid connectedness of new housing
  • Air quality and ecosystem impacts of transport electrification
  • Local energy and mobility transitions
  • Geopolitics of biofuels for aviation and shipping
  • Global battery and vehicle supply chains

These core projects are complemented by collaborations with other UKERC themes and the CREDS research programme.


UKERC's research programme builds evidence to inform decisions that shape the UK's transition towards a net zero energy system and economy. It explores the potential economic, political, social and environmental costs and benefits of energy system change, and consider how these impacts can be distributed equitably. UKERC also hosts and curates energy data, maps and monitors public engagement, carries out systematic evidence reviews and improves the transparency and understanding of energy models.


  • Barrett, J., Pye, S., Betts-Davies, S., Brand, C., et al. (2022). Energy demand reduction options for meeting national zero-emission targets in the United Kingdom. Nature Energy, 7: 726–735. doi: 10.1038/s41560-022-01057-y Open access
  • Dixon, J., Buksh, W., Bell, K. and Brand, C. (2022). The impact of plug-in frequency on the potential of vehicle to grid to support transport and electricity system decarbonisation. eTransportation, 13: 100180. doi: 10.1016/j.etran.2022.100180
  • Brand, C., Dekker, H.J. and Behrendt, F. (2022). Cycling, climate change and air pollution. In: Advances in transport policy and planning. Elsevier. doi: 10.1016/bs.atpp.2022.04.010
  • Brand, C., Götschi, T., Dons, E., Gerike, R., Anaya-Boig, E., Avila-Palencia, I., de Nazelle, A., Gascon, M., Gaupp-Berghausen, M., Iacorossi, F., Kahlmeier, S., Int Panis, L., Racioppi, F., Rojas-Rueda, D., Standaert, A., Stigell, E., Sulikova, S., Wegener, S. and Nieuwenhuijsen, M.J. (2021). The climate change mitigation impacts of active travel: Evidence from a longitudinal panel study in seven European cities. Global Environmental Change, 67. 102224. doi: 10.1016/j.gloenvcha.2021.102224