U.S. Department of Energy Hosts National Press Club Briefing, Announces $30 Million Investment in Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Industry
In commemoration of National Hydrogen Day, aptly chosen for the atomic weight of hydrogen (1.008), the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) celebrated by hosting a breifing at the National Press Club. The breifing, held on Wednesday, October 5, with a keynote from Assistant Secretary of the DOE's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), David Friedman, who spoke on the history and future plans of the DOE’s hydrogen and fuel cell program, beginning forty years ago with the national laboratories. Automakers and hydrogen infrastructure providers also discussed their latest plans and progress. The speakers included:
* Senator Byron Dorgan (ret’d) * Joel Ewanick, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, First Element * Charlie Freese, Executive Director, Global Fuel Cell Activities, GM and Chair, H2USA * Andy Freels, President, Hyundai America Technical Center * Steve Center, Vice President, Environmental Business Development Office - Honda Motor Co. * Robert Wimmer, Director, Energy & Environmental Research, Toyota North America
In conjunction with the briefing, the Department of Energy released a new report showing continued momentum and growth in the fuel cell industry. The 2015 Fuel Cell Technologies Market Report shows that hydrogen and fuel cells continue to grow at an unprecedented rate, with more than 60,000 fuel cells, totaling roughly 300 megawatts (MW), shipped worldwide in 2015. The number of MW shipped grew by more than 65% compared to 2014. 2015 also saw the world’s first fuel cell vehicles for sale.
To further expand on this emerging market, the Energy Department announced a notice of intent to invest $30 million, subject to appropriations, to advance fuel cell and hydrogen technologies. These projects will leverage national lab consortia launched under the Energy Department's Energy Materials Network this past year, and will support the President’s Materials Genome Initiative and advanced manufacturing priorities.
Read the full DOE press release.