Report: Hydrogen Gaining Ground On Electricity Within Four Years

Cameron Aubernon
by Cameron Aubernon

Though EVs currently hold the high ground in the zero-emission vehicle market, a new report claims those vehicles will be giving ground to hydrogen in the near future.

According to The Detroit News, the Institute of Transportation Studies at the University of California, Davis says a number of factors are coming together to push hydrogen to the forefront over electricity, including: investments in infrastructure; falling R&D costs for both vehicles and station equipment; and major automakers throwing their weight behind fuel cells. UC Davis professor and director of Sustainable Transportation Energy Pathways Joan Ogden explains:

We seem to be tantalizingly close to the beginning of a hydrogen transition. The next three to four years will be critical for determining whether hydrogen vehicles are just a few years behind electric vehicles, rather than decades.

Other factors include natural gas-based hydrogen production, various consumer incentives from federal and local governments, and large investments in R&D. However, Ogden cautions that adoption of hydrogen as a viable source of transportation may take some time due to low confidence in the fuel at the present.

Cameron Aubernon
Cameron Aubernon

Seattle-based writer, blogger, and photographer for many a publication. Born in Louisville. Raised in Kansas. Where I lay my head is home.

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  • Dwright Dwright on Aug 18, 2014

    Everybody seems to be ignoring the big green elephant in the room. That all these trillions of $$$ being spent on the premise that reducing atmospheric CO2 by a few thousandths of a percent will somehow affect global warming or climate change. Keep paying the snake oil salesman, he'll keep selling you snake oil. I don't want to argue, I'll bring facts, you'll bring empty rhetoric, no one will win.

    • FormerFF FormerFF on Aug 18, 2014

      CARB's rationale in asking for these ZEV cars is to reduce ground level smog, it has nothing to do with C02 emissions.

  • SCE to AUX SCE to AUX on Aug 18, 2014

    In 4 years, the H2 carmakers will be rethinking their plans, attempting to back out of this ridiculous path.

  • Sparc Sparc on Aug 18, 2014

    Whoever wrote this report is living in some hydrogen dreamland. Hydrogen infrastructure is non-existent. Anyone who is looking to setup a refueling station is looking for government handout. It will take decades of serious investment to set up anything that could compete even remotely with electricity. Electricity is widely available. We just have to plug in like Tesla is doing with their superchargers.

    • JPWhite JPWhite on Aug 18, 2014

      Your analysis and logic is impeccable. However reality has a way of turning out differently than it "Should". Read my longer posting above for my arguments why Hydrogen does have a better chance than a snowball in hell. Hydrogen may win the minds of the public, for totally illogical reasons.

  • Pete Zaitcev Pete Zaitcev on Aug 19, 2014

    Behold the awesome power of government incentives to distort reality. And making H2 out of NG is just super retarded for transportation purposes. It's one thing when H2 is renewable, and this is entirely different.