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Milestone for H2 Production by High-Temperature Electrolysis

Researchers at the DOE’s Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (INEEL) and Ceramatec, Inc have successfully shown that they can produce hydrogen at temperatures and pressures suitable for a future Generation IV nuclear reactor via High-Temperature Electrolysis (HTE). This marks a milestone along the research path laid out some three... Read more →

$5,000 Bounty for Buying Fuel-Efficient Cars

San Jose Business Journal. Business software maker Hyperion Solutions (Sunnyvale, CA) will give $5,000 to employees who buy a car that gets at least 45 miles per gallon. “Companies and individuals have extraordinary power to make a difference,” said Godfrey Sullivan, president and chief executive officer of Hyperion in announcing... Read more →

Fresno Piloting Neighborhood Electric Vehicles

Fresno Bee. Fresno, CA, is establishing a pilot program to promote neighborhood electric vehicles. Neighborhood electric vehicles (NEVs)—also called low-speed vehicles (LSVs)— are compact, one- to four-passenger vehicles powered by rechargeable batteries and electric motors. Models cover a range from bulked-up golf carts to small versions of sedans and pickups.... Read more →

Sidenote on Appropriations Bill: Federal Control of LNG Terminal Sites

Congress embedded a provision in the omnibus spending bill that gives support to the federal government over the states when it comes to siting Liquefied Natural Gas terminals. On March 24, 2004, FERC issued a declaratory order asserting exclusive jurisdiction over the approval and siting of liquefied natural gas (LNG)... Read more →

CNG to Account for 10% of Thai Vehicle Fuel in 5 Years

Thailand’s state-owned oil and gas conglomerate (PTT) expects CNG will account for up to 10% of all fuel used in the country’s transportation sector within five years, according to a report in the Bangkok Post picked up by Dowjones. Currently, natural gas for vehicles accounts for less than 0.5% of... Read more →

Ethanol Credit Trading in the New Ontario RFS

Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty announced that gasoline sold in Ontario will contain an average of 5% ethanol by 2007. (Earlier post.) Under the new Renewable Fuel Standards (RFS), effective January 1, 2007, a wholesaler’s annual gasoline sales must achieve an average of at least 5% ethanol content. This may be... Read more →

India Backs Away from Ethanol Blend Mandate

The Indian government has rescinded the mandatory blending of ethanol in gasoline based, it says, on poor ethanol supply. The new ruling of the Petroleum Ministry makes “sale of ethanol-blended petrol mandatory only when the price of sourcing indigenous ethanol for supply of ethanol-blended petrol is comparable to the price... Read more →

Azure Dynamics Delivers 1st of 30 Hybrids to Purolator

Azure Dynamics (earlier post) has delivered the first of 30 series hybrid electric delivery vans to Purolator, Canada’s largest overnight courier company. This is the first production delivery resulting from an agreement signed by the two companies in September 2003 that could see Purolator purchase up to 2,000 hybrid electric... Read more →

What’s in the Appropriations Bill? Part 2: More on DOE.

The DOE budget comprises a broad range of research as well as operational programs. The basic DOE Science budget has funding of $3.6 Billion this year. Within that are programs from basic energy research, to fusion research, to biological research. DOE was one of the funders of the human genome... Read more →

What’s In the Appropriations Bill? Part 1: Renewable Energy.

The appropriations bill (HR4818) Congress worked on over the weekend is massive. This is the financial fuel for the next year, though, so I thought I’d go through it to cull some highlights, starting with the funding for renewable energy programs. Congress is signing off on $389 million of funding... Read more →

VW: Biodiesel Yes, Hybrids No. At Least for Now.

Autowired in the UK reports that Dr. Bernd Pischetsrieder, chairman of the board of management of Volkswagen, remarked that while Volkswagen will eventually offer hybrids, it won’t be soon. Speaking to journalists in London, prior to the SMMT Annual Dinner, where he was guest speaker, he said: “We are not... Read more →

H2 Fuel Systems Firm Acquires Design and Assembly Company

Quantum Fuel Systems Technologies, a provider of hydrogen fuel systems and storage for both ICE and fuel cell vehicles, is acquiring Starcraft Corporation in a stock-for-stock deal valued at approximately $185 million. (Earlier posts on Quantum here and here.) Starcraft is an interesting acquisition for Quantum. Starcraft is a supplier... Read more →

B100 Biodiesel for Construction Fleet

The Snohomish County Business Journal (WA) profiles a small, local heavy-equipment construction company that has switched completely to B100 (except for use of blends in cold weather). Earthwise Excavation, formed in 1987, specializes in grading, septic systems, storm systems, water mains, street improvements and erosion control. It started using B100... Read more →

More Scuffling Over Revenue for Highway Repair

Like California (earlier post), Eugene, OR is trying to figure out how to fund its highway repairs. In 2002, the City Council tried to implement a pay-per-trip surcharge—the Transportation System Maintenance Fee (TSFM). The charge would have cost households an estimated $2.90 a month and businesses between $20 and $1,150... Read more →

Honda May Soon Build Accord Hybrid in China

China Daily. Guangzhou Honda may soon begin production of Accord hybrids, according to Zeng Qinghong, executive vice-president of the venture. As noted earlier, Guangzhou Honda Automobile Co.(GHAC) is a joint venture between Honda and Guangzhou Auto Group. The JV is building a new plant with an annual capacity of 120,000... Read more →

Breaking In Is Hard To Do

Alternate Energy Company (AEC) is a small, new company that has gone through a number of changes and contortions over the past couple of years as it works on perfecting and then commercializing a proprietary approach to hydrogen production. AEC’s technology reportedly generates hydrogen gas from proprietary alloys (the company... Read more →

Holden (GM) and CSIRO Working on Next-Gen Supercaps

Holden, the Australian GM subsidiary, will partner with CSIRO, Australia’s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization, to research and to develop supercapacitors, advanced batteries and energy management systems for the next generation of hybrid and fuel cell vehicles. Holden and CSIRO began collaborative research into alternative propulsion systems with the... Read more →

Hydrogenics to Develop and Demo H2 Bus

Hydrogenics (earlier post) has been tapped by the Ministry for Transport Energy and State Planning of the State North-Rhine-Westphalia (NRW), Germany, to develop a hydrogen fuel-cell powered “midi-bus.” The propulsion system of the 17-foot European-manufactured bus will be based on Hydrogenics’ HyPM power module technology. Also under the terms of... Read more →

Event Note: California’s Transportation Energy Future

CALSTART is hosting a one-day forum exploring the whys and hows for reducing California’s petroleum consumption and increasing its use of non-petroleum fuels by the year 2020. WestStart-CALSTART is a consortium working to develop advanced transportation technologies and clean transportation solutions. It was founded in 1992 as CALSTART, but rapidly... Read more →

E-Diesel for Refuse Fleet

E.J. Harrison & Sons, a refuse truck fleet operator based in California, is switching to O2Diesel’s (earlier post) ethanol-diesel blend. The year-long program, funded under the terms of O2Diesel’s subcontract with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), commenced with 14 trucks running on O2Diesel, with the bulk of the 120... Read more →

Samsung Hydrogen-on-Demand Scooter

Samsung Engineering has successfully tested a prototype fuel-cell scooter that uses a version of “hydrogen on demand” technology to generate its own hydrogen from a solution of sodium borohydride. The scooter, the result of a project sponsored by the Ministry of Science and Technology and the Korea Institute of Science... Read more →

Ozone Kills

A study in the current issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association links short-term peaks in air ozone levels to short-term peaks in premature death rates in urban areas in the US. Although ground-level ozone has long been associated with various adverse health effects, studies up to now... Read more →

Renewable Natural Gas? The Discovery of Active Methane Biogenesis in Coalbeds

Researchers at Luca Technologies, a biotech firm focused on energy solutions, have announced the discovery of evidence pointing to ongoing, realtime natural gas generation by anaerobic (living without oxygen) bacteria resident deep in coal fields in Wyoming. Methane (natural gas), while frequently developed with petroleum, also occurs in association with... Read more →

H2 Generation and Fueling at Home: Honda’s Home Energy System II

Honda R&D Americas and Plug Power have began successful operation of their 2nd-generation prototype home hydrogen system, the Home Energy Station II (HES II). HES II is the latest evolution of a joint development effort by Honda and Plug Power to produce a home system that generates hydrogen from natural... Read more →

Shell Coal-to-Liquids Project in China

China’s largest coal producer and Royal Dutch/Shell are in a 9-month feasibility study exploring the development of more coal-to-liquids plants in China. Earlier this year, China announced a $6 billion coal-to-liquids development project with Sasol. (Earlier post.) China, with the world’s largest coal reserves, is looking to coal-to-liquids technology as... Read more →

Toro Evaluating Nuvera Fuel Cell

Toro—the lawnmower and powered yard equipment company—is evaluating Nuvera’s H2e hydrogen fuel cell module for potential use in its professional grounds and turf care equipment. The H2e (“hydrogen to electricity”) is Nuvera’s small-scale product line of hydrogen power modules. This line of PEM (Proton Exchange Membrane) fuel cell stacks provides... Read more →

Startup for Major Canadian Biomass-to-Ethanol Plant

MEMS USA, and Accelon Energy Systems have created Can-Am Ethanol, a joint venture to create, build and run a major biomass-to-ethanol processing plant in Canada. MEMS USA is the prime contractor on a cost plus basis. The design, engineering and construction portions of the project are budgeted at approximately $140... Read more →

Speed Record from LPG Racer with Euro Space Agency Technology

The European Space Agency (ESA) reports on its technology support for a “green” racing car created by the non-profit organisation Idée Verte [Green idea] Compétition. Running on liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) and lubricated with sunflower oil, the car uses ESA materials to protect against fire hazards. Last week the car... Read more →

Japanese Gov’t Backs Away from New Carbon Tax

Japan is one of the signatories of the Kyoto treaty, and was the host of the 1997 UN convention on climate control, but its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions are going in the wrong direction—i.e., more emissions, not less. Instead of being on track to meet its reduction target of 6%... Read more →

IEA/SMP Transport Model

Now you can model out your own vision of the future of sustainable transportation—or at least get a better understanding of some linkages and assumptions. The International Energy Agency (IEA) and the World Business Council for Sustainable Development’s (WBCSD) Sustainable Mobility Project (SMP) have released a spreadsheet-based global transport model—the... Read more →

Win A Prius

The Center for a New American Dream is giving away a brand new 2005 Toyota Prius to whomever comes up with the best slogan for their (inter)national media and grassroots campaign to pressure automakers to speed up the production of hybrid cars. Enter the contest here. As Jamais Cascio puts... Read more →

H2 Consolidation: Hydrogenics and Stuart Energy

Hydrogenics is acquiring Stuart Energy Systems in a $130-million all-stock deal. ($155 million Canadian—both parties are Canadian companies, and located about 2 km apart in Ontario.) The combination of the hydrogen generation (water electrolysis) and fueling technologies of Stuart Energy with the fuel-cell technologies and testing equipment of Hydrogenics creates... Read more →