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Maimgara
May 2, 2007
Chlorine for the Gene-pool.

The prospects for fuel cell vehicles depends on where you are and what you want to do.

For a daily driver, back and forth to the job and errands, a fuel cell vehicle makes no sense - its the perfect use case for a battery EV. This even worse in areas outside California or other major metropolitan areas - getting a BEV fast charge network is hard enough.
For a fleet vehicle and especially metro busses, non-electrified rail and stuff like garbage trucks, its a different deal. As both of you mention, the refueling network is the chicken/egg issue with adoption of FCEVs. America on average is not the place for fuel cells, the collective transport infrastructure, which is the FC front runner in Europe and China is trash. There is very little in gov/state generally (compare to EU Strategy - Focused on supporting the tanking infrastructure and green H2 production).

Fuel Cells has a place in transportation, but its not foremost personal transportation. Ive driven the Hyundai ix35, the Mirai and the Mercedes FCELL - they're nice cars, but absolutely niche cars.

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Maimgara
May 2, 2007
Chlorine for the Gene-pool.

CommieGIR posted:

The problem is hydrogen fuel cells are just basically a freebie for the fossil fuel industry since the majority of hydrogen is sourced from natural gas but then brings up the question okay if you don't Source it from natural gas where do you get it the obvious answer being electrolysis of water but you need a lot of power to do that and it would just make more sense to have an electric car at the end of the day versus using the power to do electrolysis.

At the end of the day we can no longer allow methane sourcing of energy that includes natural gas and any sort of hydrogen derived from natural gas we've got to cut that stuff out
This is a very America-centric point of view (quite natural on a american forum). In a european context, the production of H2 is increasingly happening with off-peak renevables (wind, mainly) and Norwegian/Swedish hydro. Yes, most H2 produced is brown H2, but this is changing.
Your point with "just having an BEV" is true for ordinary people - Im agreeing with you here. Fuel Cells are for those vehicles where extended charging breaks are hard/impossible to accomodate, such as metro busses, cabs, garbage trucks and the like. These vehicles typically return a depot, where a single fueling point can serve the entire fleet, trained mechanics can do service and the organisation have the resouces to get funding from development funds such as FCH-JU (again, an EU thing - CARB in California is the closest).
I think dismissing fuel cells because the current sourcing of H2 isnt CO2 neutral is misguided. Yes, people should buy a BEV - economics permitting - but for commercial transport BEVs are not great.

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