With the inevitable end to our World's fossil fuel reserves we must look to other forms of fuel to power our automobiles and other forms of transport. With Hybrid's, Natural Gas Vehicle's, and Diesel's Engines dependence on petroleum based products for power they are not a viable alternative to regular gasoline. And with the clear and massive limitations of electric vehicles the only common sense choice for the future fuel of the world is Hydrogen and the Fuel Cell Vehicles it powers.
One of the issues we face with Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Vehicles is that they are extremely expensive for consumers. Hydrogen is not a natural energy source, meaning we cannot just get it from the ground, therefore we will have to seperate hydrogen from our source of water. The technology as of now to achieve this is very expensive making a hydrogen fueled car cost $100,000 or more. This is far more that what people are paying for gasoline powered vehicles now.
On the contrary, hydrogen is a naturally occurring element, but not in a gaseous form. The difficulty comes in separating it from other elements. However, there are a number of ways in which that can be done and which have been done for decades now. And yes, HFC Vehicles are expensive to buy, but there were lease options available, like from manufacture Honda which allowed the public to be exposed this new form of automobile. And just like other new technologies the price will go down in time.
Also HFC vehicles are incredibly clean. In a time when government emission regulations are incredibly strict and more people are focusing on the efficiency & environmental impact of their vehicles, HFC offer something that hybrid, conventional gas, diesel, and natural gas vehicles can't & that is a true zero emissions vehicle. And this is all accomplished without the range or battery issues of electric cars. In short HFCs offer all the pros of the other fuels without any of the drawbacks.
Actually producing hydrogen isn't as "clean" as we think. The process to create the fuel uses electricity and that electricity will often come from plants that burn coal, a highly polluting source. And when hydrogen is extracted from natural gas, it produces carbon emissions, which is exactly what we're trying to avoid by using hydrogen in the first place.
Right, that is at the moment. But the point of this debate is for why Hydrogen is the fuel of the future, not the hear and now. As time progresses and the technology becomes more available on a wide scale and the other factors involved with compressed hydrogen's production become more feasible at a low impact to the environment, like with the use of clean coals, the appeal of hydrogen will increase while its drawbacks decrease all while it continues to offer the freedom of gas without the impact.
I can only argue the facts that we presently have. What if technology cannot prove a way to avoid the harmful emmisions for hydrogen production? My argument would be the same. Also, hydrogen fuel is extremely flammable and odorless. If there were a hydrogen leak in someone's vehicle, they would not be able to detect it which is extremely dangerous. Being that tomorrow would technically be the future, a hydrogen fueled car, given the circumstances that are present, would not be the best choice.
1) Clean Coal has been in use at some power plants since 2008 and its popularity in combination with other clean air technologies like Carbon Capture means that the environmental impact of electricity would be reduced.
2) Propane is, along with other Natural Gases, odorless, but a scent is added to it/them to make the handling of the gas safer. The same can be done to Hydrogen.
3) Extracting Hydrogen from NG shouldn't be done due to the non renewable nature of NG, especially when there are better alternatives.