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NREL Hosts IEA Meetings on Hybrid Electric Vehicles

December 1, 2009

NREL hosted meetings of the Executive Committee and three of the working groups of the International Energy Agency's (IEA’s) Hybrid Electric Vehicle Implementing Agreement (HEV-IA) on October 26-30, 2009. Together, the HEV-IA Executive Committee and the working groups, known as annexes, address issues important to the worldwide deployment of clean transportation technologies such as plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, fuel cell vehicles, and heavy hybrids, which include large commercial trucks and buses. These kinds of vehicles have the potential to greatly reduce both the use of fossil fuels for transportation and harmful tailpipe emissions.

Every year, the HEV-IA Executive Committee meets in one country to discuss the progress of each working group, report findings, and make recommendations to IEA’s governing body concerning technologies and policies. This year was the United States’ turn to serve as host, and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) asked NREL to hold the meetings. Staff members at the laboratory are involved in several IEA working groups, and NREL conducts research, development, and analyses of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, advanced energy storage and power electronics systems, and heavy hybrids, among other technologies.

The 32 attendees at the October meetings represented 15 of the 16 IEA-HEV-IA member countries and included several staff members from NREL. The DOE Vehicle Technologies Energy Storage Program Manager, who is the official U.S. Government representative to the IEA-HEV-IA activity, also attended.

The International Energy Agency was founded in the 1970s, originally to coordinate international responses to energy emergencies caused by interruptions in oil supplies. The IEA now acts as an energy policy advisor to its 28 member countries to help them adopt clean, reliable, affordable energy technologies.