The Canadian Academy of Engineering / Programs & Publications

Transportation Futures

In a country the size of Canada, with its wide range of weather conditions and global trade routes, transportation is a critical component of our economy and way of life. As the world charts a path to Net-zero by 2050, changes in transportation technology may be one of the most evident to Canadians. Emerging and traditional car companies are setting targets for the introduction of electric passenger and mass transit vehicles. Ownership models are evolving. The aerospace industry is looking to biofuels, hydrogen and non-traditional designs to reduce the carbon footprint of domestic and international travel. Airborne and autonomous taxis are being prototyped around the world.

Canada has been a global leader in automotive, aerospace and rail transportation for over 100 years. A radical transformation is anticipated over the next decades that will challenge Canadian innovators and manufacturers as well as city planners and government policy makers.

In the recent Council of Canadian Academies report “Choosing Canada’s Automotive Future”, Fellows of the Academy and other experts led a thorough assessment of the state of Canada’s automotive and transportation sectors and the challenges and opportunities ahead. With an electricity grid that is already one of the greenest on the planet, Canada will be looking to the transportation sector as one path to reach its 2050 Net-zero targets.

The Academy will continue to examine the implications of global and national trends from an engineering perspective.


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