EPA posts patch to MOVES3 Mobile Source Emissions Model

EPA has posted a “patch” to MOVES3 that fixes a number of small issues with processing and aggregation, making it easier to use the model for variety of applications. The patched model, designated MOVES3.0.1, includes new code and a new default database, MOVESDB20210209.  It also includes scripts to assist with checking MOVES3 submissions for the 2020 National Emission Inventory.

MOVES3.0.1 is available for download at www.epa.gov/moves/latest-version-motor-vehicle-emission-simulator-moves.  Please download and use the new version if you have not yet downloaded MOVES3, if you intend to use the default scale or Nonroad features we have updated, if you are preparing an NEI submission, or if you are modeling Essex County, NY.  Otherwise, MOVES3 users can use either MOVES3.0.0 (the version posted to the web in November 2020) or MOVES3.0.1.  For more information about regulatory uses of MOVES, see the MOVES3 Policy Guidance which applies to all versions of MOVES3.

EPA’s MOtor Vehicle Emission Simulator (MOVES) is a state-of-the-science emission modeling system that estimates emissions for onroad motor vehicles and most nonroad equipment types for criteria pollutants, greenhouse gases, and air toxics.  MOVES3.0.1 includes the following updates:

  • Improved default vehicle miles travelled (VMT) for all U.S. counties, with small increases in most counties and large increases for Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands
  • Improved default gasoline characteristics for Essex County, New York
  • Improved installer to address issues when MOVES is installed with Windows 7
  • Improved error checking to allow source type vehicle population of zero
  • Added scripts to help check MOVES3 submissions for the 2020 National Emission Inventory
  • Added Ant command to facilitate importing inputs from the command line
  • Added idle tab to the default scale data manager
  • Removed processing of irrelevant diesel fuel parameters
  • Removed incorrect check requiring RoadTypeDistribution inputs at default scale
  • Removed incorrect “core geography” database check at default scale
  • Removed petroleum and fossil fuel modeling options, as MOVES3 is not intended to be used for well-to-pump emissions modeling
  • Fixed problem with annual pre-aggregation that led to “data truncated” errors
  • Fixed problem with national pre-aggregation that incorrectly weighted meteorology inputs
  • Fixed problem with state pre-aggregation that incorrectly weighted E-85 fuel properties
  • Fixed problem that caused “divide by zero” errors in post-processing scripts
  • Fixed problem with tabbed output post-processing script that led to failures
  • Fixed problem with county scale XML importer for VMT
  • Fixed problem that led to “out of range RVP” errors in nonroad diesel-only runs
  • Fixed problem with nonroad runs for calendar years 2051-2061 that resulted in no output
  • Fixed problem in nonroad runs that could result in incorrect activity output of average horsepower and load factors for gasoline equipment when fuel subtype is checked

For additional technical details on these changes, see the MOVES3.0.1 milestone on the MOVES GitHub site: https://github.com/USEPA/EPA_MOVES_Model/milestone/1.

This update is a patch to MOVES3.  It does not change onroad criteria pollutant emission rates in MOVES3 at the county or project level, and it is not considered a new model for State Implementation Plan (SIP) and transportation conformity purposes.

Compared to the MOVES3 model that we posted in November 2020, MOVES3.0.1 will increase activity (VMT) for runs at the default (national) scale that use the default VMT allocations to county, as well as for runs that use nation pre-aggregation.  The VMT change will be less than 0.5 percent for counties outside Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, but changes in other vehicle activity (starts, source hours parked, etc.) may be larger.  More importantly, modelers using MOVES3 default VMT to model counties in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands will see a very large increase in activity, and thus emissions.  (Note that this change will not impact state and local regulatory use since default VMT cannot be used for SIP or conformity purposes.)

MOVES3.0.1 also updates the default gasoline for Essex County, New York, changing it from reformulated gasoline to conventional gasoline.  While one portion of Essex County is an area that would use reformulated gasoline, that portion has no gas stations and thus conventional gasoline is the appropriate fuel in MOVES for this county.  In runs where Essex County is modelled with default fuel inputs, MOVES3.0.1 will estimate higher emissions from gasoline vehicles for most pollutants as compared to MOVES3.0.0, but will estimate lower CO emissions. If you have questions regarding fuels inputs for state and local regulatory analyses, see EPA’s MOVES3 Technical Guidance.

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