In the past year alone, the US Department of Energy (DOE) has channelled over $100m in grants towards more than 50 projects for its H2@Scale initiative. These research, development, and demonstration activities are designed to fully realise hydrogen’s benefits across the entire US economy. Meanwhile, the Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Association (FCHEA) in Washington DC has published its Road Map to a US Hydrogen Economy.
These steps alone demonstrate the breadth and focus with which technological development is advancing the deployment of hydrogen throughout the US. But taken together with private sector initiatives – established in California and spreading more widely – they demonstrate clearly the commitment being made across the US to decarbonise transport, heavy industry, energy storage and other energy-intensive sectors.
In these ways the US is undertaking serious efforts to lay the foundations for what some predict will be a national hydrogen economy. California leads the way, but the rest of the country is picking up the pace too. One only has to dig a little deeper to see that not only is the US hydrogen economy gathering pace, but that its key players are the true pioneers of the global hydrogen market.
FIBA Technologies, the world’s largest designer and manufacturer of high pressure gas storage solutions, currently looks overseas for around 60% of its hydrogen business, with 40% being domestic. FIBA’s vessels are in use at 135+ hydrogen refuelling stations globally, far ahead of its rivals. It is investing heavily in product development, partly in anticipation of the growth of the domestic market, and reflects here on five factors for optimism in the US.
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