NREL and Google Maps Team Up to Reduce Emissions and Combat Climate Change (Text Version)

This is the text version of the video about NREL and Google Maps developing more eco-friendly route options.

Video clip of person sitting in driver's seat of sedan, with hands on steering wheel.

<in Google Maps voice>

Starting route to home.


We know this phrase all too well.

Video clip showing aerial view of city and busy highway at night.

It's our fastest option to our desired destination.

Video clip of car speedometer with speed increasing.

But what if your concern isn't just speed?

Video clip showing aerial view of city, with trucks, cars, buses, and taxi cabs traveling on city streets.

What if it's environmental impact as well?

Video clip showing aerial view of modern-looking buildings, with NREL and Google Maps logos.

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory is partnering with Google to answer this need; to reduce emissions and combat climate change by developing more eco-friendly route options.

Video clip of car producing tailpipe emissions, followed by images of melting icebergs and car driving along rural roadway.

Using NREL's Route Energy Prediction Model (RouteE), each vehicle's energy consumption is accurately predicted over a proposed route.

Image of Denver area map, with column on left showing RouteE tool interface including RouteE logo above several selections including origin and destination, fuel types (gasoline or electric, with electric eventually selected), and route options, showing time and energy associated with each route. The NREL logo appears at the top right. On the map, one route is shown in green (with origin and destination markers) and the other route is shown in grey.

RouteE also considers factors such as anticipated traffic congestion, traffic speed, road type, road grade and number of turns.

Videos clip of person sitting in driver's seat of sedan, driving along roadway; congested traffic on busy highway; dirt road with no traffic; paved country road; and person driving a sedan.

Soon, Google Maps will default to the route with the lowest carbon footprint when it has approximately the same estimated time of arrival as the fastest route. In cases where the more eco-friendly route could increase travel time, Google Maps will show users the relative CO2 impact between routes, allowing them to make an informed choice about which route to take.

Animated clip of map showing origin and destination points, with the RouteE logo in the corner along with text: "Visuals do not represent Google Maps interface." Car travels along selected route shown in green, with two other route options leading to destination point.

So in the future, maybe you'll hear…

Video clip of person driving sedan followed by person driving sport utility vehicle with open windows.

<in Google Maps voice>

Starting most eco-friendly route to home.

Image of various energy-related icons.

Learn more: