Promoting Cleaner Fuels and Vehicles Worldwide
The Partnership for Clean Fuels and Vehicles (PCFV) is a global public-private partnership working with developing and transitional countries to reduce air pollution from vehicles through the promotion of cleaner fuels and vehicles.
EPA was a charter member of the Partnership, which began its work in 2002 and now includes 73 partners. The partnership kicked off its international cooperation with a focus on the promotion of unleaded fuels. It has achieved great success with the use of leaded gasoline being virtually eliminated, with only one country still using exclusively leaded gasoline as of 2018.
The PCFV helped get lead out of gasoline globally, resulting in economic benefits from the prevention of lead exposure in children everywhere. [Reference: Peter L. Tsai and Thomas H. Hatfield. “Global Benefits From the Phaseout of Leaded Fuel.” Journal of Environmental Health. 74: 8-14. 2011.]
Beginning in 2008, the PCFV’s second focus area has been to reduce sulfur in fuels. At that time, few developing countries had low sulfur fuel policies. Since 2009, the PCFV has helped more than 20 countries – whose populations total over 1.7 billion – implement low sulfur diesel fuel standards (50 ppm or below). This effort has significantly reduced sulfur dioxides and particulate matter, both of which have significant impacts on human health.
Most recently, the PCFV has launched a third campaign – the vehicles campaign – recognizing that governments that have been successful in securing cleaner fuels will achieve greater environmental and health impacts by combining cleaner fuels with cleaner vehicles that take advantage of innovative emission control technologies.
The PCFV engages governments and stakeholders in developing countries:
- To eliminate lead in gasoline globally. There are only a few countries left still using only leaded fuels or offering both leaded and unleaded fuels. View regional and global updates on progress removing lead from fuels. Exit
- For all countries to have access to fuel with 50 ppm sulfur. For comparison, the United States uses 15 ppm sulfur diesel fuel; most developing countries offer fuels that are much higher in sulfur content. View regional and global updates on progress reducing sulfur content in fuels. Exit
- To promote the introduction of cleaner, more efficient vehicles. Since 2012 six developing countries have adopted vehicle emission standards, and additional countries are using the PCFV Regulatory Toolkit Exitto develop standards.
Evaluations, Tools and Outcomes from PCFV’s Work
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- PCFV Regulatory Toolkit
The Partnership for Clean Fuels and Vehicles (PCFV) has been working with developing and transitional countries to reduce vehicular air pollution through the promotion of cleaner fuels and vehicles. With support from EPA and Environment Canada, the PCFV created a regulatory toolkit to introduce the need for a systems approach to vehicle emission reduction. A systems approach matches fuels and vehicle improvements - to move towards tighter vehicle emissions regulations.
This toolkit supports developing and transitional countries to introduce requirements for 50 ppm and below sulfur fuels; produce or import lower emitting and more efficient vehicle technologies; establish vehicle emissions control roadmaps; and ultimately improve air quality and human health in these countries.
- Tools for Decision-Makers – Clean Fleet Management Toolkit
To promote low sulfur fuels and the introduction of cleaner vehicles, PCFV developed a Toolkit for Clean Fleet Strategy Development Exit to assist vehicle fleet managers to assess the air quality impact of their fleets. The PCFV also provides training on this toolkit and has delivered trainings in Asia Pacific, Central and Eastern Europe, and Latin America and the Caribbean.The training prepares public and private on-road vehicle fleet managers to:1. evaluate the impacts of their fleets on the environment and human health, and then2. develop a practical strategy for corrective and cost-effective action.
- Promoting Cleaner Fuels in Indonesia
From 2010-2016, EPA worked with Indonesia to develop cost-benefit analyses to promote government fiscal policies, to create and foster dialogue amongst a cross-government and industry stakeholders group, and to engage the government-owned petroleum company Pertamina. As a result of this work, Indonesia plans to introduce low sulfur fuels that meet the PCFV target of 50 ppm.
- PCFV Evaluation by EPA (December 2011)
Since the launch of the Partnership for Clean Fuels and Vehicles Lead Campaign in 2002, nearly all of the 100-plus countries using leaded fuel at that time have eliminated lead from their fuel supplies. As a result, the Lead Campaign for the PCFV is considered to have been successfully completed. In follow up to this success, EPA sponsored a third party evaluation in 2011 to identify and examine lessons and design principles for successful partnership that may apply to other existing or future international partnerships.FindingsPCFV Lead Campaign Startup and DesignThe evaluators found four factors which supported a strong start and successful implementation of the Campaign:1. preceding developments, such as known public health impacts for lead and existing momentum for change;2. a timely opportunity with support from senior leaders;3. a clear, measurable, and ambitious-yet-achievable goal; and4. strong partnership design and design process that fosters ownership and trust.Lead Campaign ImplementationImplementation combined the following strong features:1. multi-level, multi-angle implementation strategy that covers key issues and engages key stakeholders;2. partners bring expertise and commitment through complementary roles;3. modest yet focused resource investments; and4. addressing challenges, adaptation, and learning from experience.
- PCFV Evaluation by UNEP (October 2010)
In 2010, UNEP’s Evaluation Office commissioned an independent evaluation of the contribution of the PCFV to the phase out of leaded gasoline in Sub Saharan Africa (SSA), some 48 countries.The evaluation made the following findings:
- Without the PCFV it would have taken at least 10 years rather than five to phase out lead in SSA (conservative estimate).
- The PCFV therefore contributed to health benefits, which in turn promoted social and economic gains.
- UNEP operated as a high level advocate to governments, as a channel to resources within the Partnership, and as a facilitator and supporter of activities at various levels.