Fuel cell companies push for federal funding

A coalition of 26 fuel cell companies is teaming up with environmentalists to lobby the Bush Administration and Congress for federal funding to help fuel cell technology become an alternate power source for the transportation industry. In report called "Fuel Cells and Hydrogen: The Path Forward," the coalition calls for a national fuel cell and hydrogen strategy, laying out a 10-year cost-shared program

A coalition of 26 fuel cell companies is teaming up with environmentalists to lobby the Bush Administration and Congress for federal funding to help fuel cell technology become an alternate power source for the transportation industry.

In report called "Fuel Cells and Hydrogen: The Path Forward," the coalition calls for a national fuel cell and hydrogen strategy, laying out a 10-year cost-shared program to bring fuel cells to the American marketplace.

The federal share of the program over 10 years would be $5.5 billion, a commitment comparable to the current federal investment in conventional fuels and other advanced energy technologies, the group said.

Fuel cells provide vehicle power by using hydrogen gas as a fuel source, emitting only water vapor and oxygen as exhaust. In the transportation industry, fuel cells have been demonstrated on transit buses and as prototype auxiliary power units on Class 8 trucks.

Estimates of annual private sector investment in fuel cell technology range from $1 billion to $3 billion.

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