Money allocated to spur fuel cell markets

WASHINGTON, D.C. - To expand the use of clean and renewable energy sources and reduce America’s dependence on foreign oil, Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced $41.9 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funding for fuel cell technology.

These efforts will accelerate the commercialization and deployment of fuel cells and will create jobs in fuel cell manufacturing, installation, maintenance, and support services. The new funding will improve the potential of fuel cells to provide power in stationary, portable and specialty vehicle applications, while cutting carbon emissions and broadening our nation’s clean energy technology portfolio.

“The investments we’re making today will help us build a robust fuel cell manufacturing industry in the United States,” said Secretary Chu. “Developing and deploying the next generation of fuel cells will not only create jobs – it will help our businesses become more energy efficient and productive. We are laying the foundation for a green energy economy.”

The $41.9 million will support immediate deployment of nearly 1,000 fuel cell systems for emergency backup power and material handling applications (e.g., forklifts) that have emerged as key early markets in which fuel cells can compete with conventional power technologies. Additional systems will be used to accelerate the demonstration of stationary fuel cells for combined heat and power in the larger residential and commercial markets.

The increase in manufacturing volume in key early markets will also bring costs down and encourage the growth of a domestic supplier base. A variety of technologies will be developed and deployed, including polymer electrolyte, solid oxide and direct-methanol fuel cells.

The funding includes:

• $41.9 million from President Obama’s American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to fund 13 projects to deploy fuel cells — helping to build a consumer base for U.S. fuel cell manufacturers.

• Approximately $72.4 million in cost-share funding from industry participants — for a total of nearly $114.3 million. This cost share demonstrates private sector commitment to developing and deploying these clean, energy efficient technologies.


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