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Hooray for Hydrogen

Hooray for Hydrogen

In his 2003 state of the Union Address, President Bush a program called the Hydrogen Fuel initiative, which was designed to make hydrogen fuel cell vehicles cost effective by 2020. Japanese automaker, Honda, has sped up that time frame with next month's release of the FCX clarity, the first hydrogen-powered fuel-cell vehicle intended for mass production.

Are you scratching your head wondering, "What's all this hype about hydrogen?" The technology is more sustainable—cars that run entirely on electric charges still rely on coal-burning energy plants, and hybrids still require a certain amount of gasoline. Hydrogen-powered cars rely on heat and water and can be filled up easily at the pump.

In fact, Honda executives say they chose to release their first five vehicles in California because the state has already made strides in implementing hydrogen filling stations. Perhaps Honda had ulterior motives for choosing Hollywood as the jumping off point for their new innovation. Among the first customers to sign up for a $600-a-month lease are actress Jamie Lee Curtis and "Little Miss Sunshine" producer Ron Yerxa.

"When I drive it to breakfast, people will ask about it," Yerxa told the New York Times. "They'll want one, too."

Would you be willing to test out a hydrogen fuel car? [New York Times]

Posted: 6/17/08