Study: Self Driving Cars Could Worsen Congestion and Inequality

It's not all free flowing commutes and world peace in an autonomous vehicle-filled future.
February 28, 2019, 5am PST | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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A new study published by the Union of Concerned Scientists points out the potential negative outcomes of self-driving car technology, and lists policies that could ensure benefits for more people.

The potential negative outcomes are pretty bad, however, including worsening congestion and increasing inequality.

Dan Robitzski shares news of the study in an article for futurism, and here's his summary of the potential negative outcomes of massive adoption of autonomous vehicle (AV) technology: "Ultimately, the research suggests that introducing autonomous vehicles to the area would increase traffic by 66 percent, and that the added congestion would likely benefit the wealthy and take opportunities away from low-income communities."

The report includes a number of recommendations that could help mitigate these potential negative outcomes, including pooling rides (potentially by fining single-passenger trips) and investing in public transit that can avoid the new congestion induced by AVs.

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Published on Saturday, February 23, 2019 in Futurism
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