~e; Re: Fuel Cell pdf

From bc <human@electronetwork.org>
Date Thu, 6 Feb 2003 21:21:59 -0600
In-reply-to <r01050300-1015-0CC56C1D38AE11D7B7240003934F66A0@[]>

hi Howard, thanks for sending the .pdf information about
the U.S. energy budget and its funding of fuel cell R&D.
next time, due to issues of security and caution, please
send the info as plain-text, as virus' and other nasty beings
can hitchhike onto computer systems via these types of files.

I was wondering how to respond for a while now. still not sure
how to approach this. one thing is that the Fuel Cell funding
has received a lot of press, and so this will be included in the
next ~e; newsletter #13, to arrive in the next week or so.

another aspect is trying as a novice to glean any data from
the statistics, which i read an interesting comparison about
such doings, by someone referring to letting experts debate
the details, which is what i'll do in this case. my only note is
that there is an odd increase of 733% for 'technology validation'
which may be streamlining of red-tape bureaucratic measures,
and-or, dressing-up the initiative, to make it look like it is doing
more than it is (which seems to be the professional consensus)
while dropping funding for other programs like hybrid cars or
distributed energy. so, if to stay in non-political policy realms,
from a non-professional standpoint, the words and numbers
do not match, to my sense, and are in direct contradiction to
pressing world issues, where funding of some 300+ billion is
going to wars, while 1 billion to fuel cells, and things like the
new distributed energy grids to prevent against total attacks,
as defensive measures. there is little of substantial change
in the basic energy system, or so it seems. if you'd like to go
into this further, there is another list on openflows.org which
is the Public Energy Network - List, (PEN-L) which has more
info @ lists.openflows.org ...

about the professionals, there are a lot of doubters about fuel
cells as silver bullets and becoming political magic or also a
type of crystal ball of the future utopia, always 20 years off.
i was caught by surprise by this in that, listening to discussions
by engineers in the alternative energy sector, there is a great
debate about the percentage of energy efficiency from a fuel
cell being less than what is presently available in some cars
it seems. then, it also was argued that breaking down water
into hydrogen through electrolysis using renewable energy
would be even less energy efficient, and the renewables are
better used by themselves, not tied into fuel-cells. fuel-cells
are efficient in some places it seems, or more efficient than
what exists, but it would be nice if that 300 billion was going
to this type of effort, to get the foundation laid.

what interests me is what systems and components of systems
would work best, where, when, and why.

fuel cells have been mentioned for energy storage. also,
tied into hydro/dam systems.

distributed energy has its plusses and minuses.

sustainable energies all have various contingencies.

if these could be mapped out, and what is good about fuel-
cells, about wind/water, about coal/oil power, etc, were to
be brought together as modules, then this would be what
might be called an energy plan for the near term future.

it would be nice for such information to become palatable for
a wider audience than statistic-interpreting wonks (policy geeks)
as then a sense of what is needed by many sectors beyond the
energy sector could be taken into account, and new efficiencies
may be realized by having a larger view of the whole systems.

yet, it is so vague, complex, but also, esoteric until communicated
and not spun. and so far, it seems to remain in the realm of politics.


On Tuesday, February 4, 2003, at 08:03  PM, Howard Coffman wrote:

> Hello Brian,
> Thought you might find this interesting. This is on the DoE Budget as 
> it relates to fuel cells and hydrogen. Especially for an oil guy.
> See attached.
> I received this from the National Hydrogen Assn.
> I have a text file if you want excerpts.
> - Howard

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