Time to restore hydrogen and fuel cell funding?
Today, a number of organizations and trade groups called on Congress to restore funding for hydrogen and fuel cell research. Forgive me, but I think it's a great idea.
Certainly, many will point out that fuel cells are some never ending fairy tale with a conclusion that is perpetually just around the corner. Even worse, hydrogen production simply doesn't make sense.
Yet, Asian automakers - the same automakers that have beat US automakers to every punch - are still aggressively pursuing fuel cell vehicles and hydrogen production, as are most major European producers. Moreover, to assume that science has nothing left to offer on this front is, well, not very scientific.
Fuel cells should never have been a reason not to purse hybrid cars and other electric vehicles. Nonetheless, battery powered electric vehicles are no reason not to pursue hydrogen powered electric vehicles. Today, for instance, EV infrastructure is more myth than reality, especially if that infrastructure is to be powered by clean energy.
Spending a few hundred million on fuel cell and hydrogen research is chump change. We've already spent billions on Chrysler, a completely inept car company. Yet, we can't spend a few hundred million on a gamble that could revolutionize the entire energy paradigm?