- Research Engineer, ITS-Davis
- (530) 830-2544
- 1715 Tilia Street (West Village)
- Energy economic modeling
- Climate change
- Energy policy
- Renewable energy
- Transportation fuel policy
Dr. Sonia Yeh is a research scientist at the Institute of Transportation Studies, University of California, Davis. She is a faculty member of the Graduate Group in Transportation Technology and Policy (TTP) and an adjunct professor at the Department of Engineering and Public Policy, Carnegie Mellon University. Her primary research interest is to advance the understanding of future energy systems and their environmental and social impacts, and to seek solutions that improve the societal process of making decisions toward a low-carbon energy system. Her expertise is in energy market economics and modeling, lifecycle analysis of greenhouse gas emissions, alternative transportation energy use and modeling, sustainability standards for biofuels, and technological change induced by government policy. She co-leads the UC research teams with UC Davis and UC Berkeley in supporting the implementation of California's Low Carbon Fuel Standard since 2007 and is the co-director of the National Low Carbon Fuel Standard Project. She serves on many governmental advisory panels and chaired expert workgroups for governments and NGOs.
Dr. Sonia Yeh is a research scientist at the Institute of Transportation Studies, University of California, Davis. She is a faculty member of the Graduate Group in Transportation Technology and Policy (TTP) and an adjunct professor at the Department of Engineering and Public Policy, Carnegie Mellon University. Her primary research interest is to advance the understanding of future energy systems and their environmental and social impacts, and to seek solutions that improve the societal process of making decisions toward a low-carbon energy system. Her expertise is in energy market economics and modeling, lifecycle analysis of ...
TTP 289A-002 Energy Modeling for Policy Analysis
The course will familiarize students with building energy models for policy analysis. We will explore several facets of energy systems modeling including supply and demand, energy technologies, emissions, technological change and diffusion, scenario analysis, and uncertainty. We will also introduce techniques for policy analysis. The students will learn to integrate multi-disciplinary knowledge, build analytical tools, conduct alternative scenario analysis, and carry out sensitivity and uncertainty analysis. The student will be introduced to several genres of energy models and will be required to complete a number of model building exercises using Excel, other tools introduced in class, or developed by students based on his/her own skills (advanced knowledge of computer programming is not a requisite for this class). Students will become familiar with forecasting energy use and demands, gain experience of building techno!economic models, and develop skills for policy analysis. Assignments will draw on real-life policy problems at the state, federal, and international level.
- Low Carbon Fuel Policy and Analysis
- Long-Term Shifts in Lifecycle Energy Efficiency and Carbon Intensity
- Status Review of California's Low Carbon Fuel Standard - Spring 2013 (REVISED VERSION)
- Policy Options to Address Global Land Use Change from Biofuels
- Transportation Module of Global Change Assessment Model (GCAM): Model Documentation
- Land Use Change Emissions from Oil Palm Expansion in Pará, Brazil Depend on Proper Policy Enforcement on Deforested Lands
- The Future of Low-Carbon Transportation Fuels, in Physics of Sustainable Energy II: Using Energy Efficiently and Producing It Renewably
- A Framework for Assessing the Lifecycle Greenhouse Gas Benefits of Forest Bioenergy and Biofuel in an Era of Forest Carbon Management
- Timing of Carbon Emissions from Global Forest Clearance
- The Future of Low-Carbon Transportation Fuels
- "Toward a Global Low Carbon Fuel Standard for Road Transport," chapter in Energy, Transport and the Environment: Addressing the Sustainable Mobility Paradigm
- Stimulating Learning by Doing in Advanced Biofuels: Effectiveness of Alternative Policies
- Deep Greenhouse Gas Reduction Scenarios for California - Strategic Implications from the CA-TIMES Energy-Economic Systems Model
- National Low Carbon Fuel Standard: Technical Analysis Report
- National Low Carbon Fuel Standard: Policy Design Recommendations
- Status Review of California's Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) 2011 - August 2012
- Policy Options to Address Global Land Use Change from Biofuels
- A Review of Uncertainties in Technology Experience Curves
- Water Intensity of Corn-Based Ethanol Needs to Include DDGS Credit
- Life Cycle Water Consumption and Withdrawal Requirements of Ethanol from Corn Grain and Residues
- Evaluation of Water Use for Bioenergy at Different Scales
- Realizing the Geothermal Electricity Potential–Water Use and Consequences
- "Comparing Land, Water, and Materials Impacts" chapter 7 in Sustainable Transportation Energy Pathways: A Research Summary for Decision Makers
- Market-Mediated Land Use Change and Biofuel Policy: Towards an Evaluation of Mitigation Options
- Inclusion of Marine Bunker Fuels in a National LCFS Scheme
- Modeling Optimal Transition Pathways to a Low Carbon Economy in California: Impacts of Advanced Vehicles and Fuels on the Energy System
- "Optimizing the Transportation Climate Mitigation Wedge" chapter 10 in Sustainable Transportation Energy Pathways: A Research Summary for Decision Makers
- "Toward a Universal Low-Carbon Fuel Standard" chapter 11 in Sustainable Transportation Energy Pathways: A Research Summary for Decision Makers
- "Key Measurement Uncertainties for Biofuel Policy" chapter 12 in Sustainable Transportation Energy Pathways: A Research Summary for Decision Makers
- Analysis of Lifecycle Water Requirements of Transportation Fuels: Corn-Based Ethanol - Model Version 1.1
- Analysis of Lifecycle Water Requirements of Transportation Fuels: Corn-based Ethanol - Model Description
- Analysis of Lifecycle Water Requirements of Energy and Transportation Fuels: Electricity from Geothermal Resources - Model Version 1.0
- Analysis of Lifecycle Water Requirements of Energy and Transportation Fuels: Electricity from Geothermal Resources - Model Description
- Low Carbon Fuel Standards: Implementation Scenarios and Challenges
- Indirect Land-Use Change from Biofuels: Recent Developments in Modeling and Policy Landscapes
- Land Use Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Conventional Oil Production and Oil Sands
- Toward a Global Low Carbon Fuel Standard
- A Report to the California Air Resources Board: Carbon Emission Factors Subworkgroup, Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) Indirect Land Use Change Expert Workgroup
- Role of Low Carbon Fuel Standard in Reducing U.S. Transportation Emissions, chapter 5 in Climate and Transportation Solutions: Findings from the 2009 Asilomar Conference on Transportation and Energy Policy
- Experience curves for power plant emission control technologies
- Learning curves for environmental technology and their importance for climate policy analysis
- Technology Innovations and Experience Curves for Nitrogen Oxides Control Technologies
- A centurial history of technological change and learning curves or pulverized coal-fired utility boilers
- An empirical analysis on the adoption of alternative fuel vehicles:The case of natural gas vehicles
- An Integrated Assessment of the Impacts of Hydrogen Economy on Transportation, Energy Use, and Air Emissions
- Use of experience curves to estimate the future cost of power plants with CO2 capture
ITS-Davis researchers Sahoko Yui and Sonia Yeh warn that "if policies are not strictly enforced there is the potential to hugely increase greenhouse gas emissions from palm production," in their study of Brazil's deforestation policy for palm oil production.
Sonia Yeh, from the UC Davis Institute of Transportation Studies, explains that "expanding millions of hectares of Brazilian land to produce palm oil for food or for renewable, clean-burning biodiesel could result in extremely high emissions of carbon dioxide unless strict controls are put in place."
Companies "are meeting and exceeding the standard," said Sonia Yeh, the report's lead author and a research scientist at the Institute of Transportation Studies at the University of California, Davis. But the standard remains in legal limbo.
"Most people know about California's cap and trade program," said ITS-Davis research scientist Sonia Yeh. "But in terms of the total impact of reducing California's greenhouse gas emissions, the Low Carbon Fuel Standard policy is just as important."
Industry will need to continue to lower the carbon intensity of their fuels in upcoming years, according to a status report published in by authors Sonia Yeh, Julie Witcover and Jeff Kessler at the Institute of Transportation Studies at the UC Davis
A status review of California’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) for the period of 2011 and the first quarter of 2012 by Dr. Sonia Yeh at the Institute of Transportation Studies, UC Davis and Julie Witcover found that regulated parties in the LCFS—i.e., oil producers and importers to California—exceeded the standard in 2011 and the first quarter (Q1) of 2012 by a substantial margin.
Emails show how a Washington lobbyist enlisted Canadian officials to beat back U.S. carbon standards. These days, California is the only U.S. jurisdiction implementing that policy for a low carbon fuel standard. And as for those 11 Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states? “The work continues,” University of California-Davis transportation researcher Sonia Yeh said in an interview.