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Re: E-M:/ Hydrogen is the future ...

Enviro-Mich message from Rane Curl <ranecurl@engin.umich.edu>

On Fri, 30 Jun 2006, Lowell Prag wrote:

I don't agree with your argument against the economics of hydrogen for use
in fuel cells to create electricity, as you have left out some key

First though, you are correct in pointing out that strictly speaking,
hydrogen is not a fuel but rather, an energy carrier, in the same sense
that electricity is not a fuel but rather, an energy carrier.

Also, it is important to note that there is no free lunch with hydrogen,
as it takes as much energy to extract hydrogen from water, as you end up

With those points in mind, let me briefly address two issues, while also
keeping in mind that hydrogen is the perfect "fuel", as it is completely
renewable and also completely non-polluting, as the only two by products
when used in a fuel cell to create electricity, are pure water from which
you can get more hydrogen, and heat which can also be captured and reused.

The above observations are true, but still relegate hydrogen to at best a niche fuel or electricity source, and solar energy is too dilute to offer a practical source for replacing our electric and especially fuel needs through hydrogen. Rather than entering into a detailed technical debate here I will cite a source where it is already done, and let the readers be the judge:

"The Solar Fraud: Why Solar Energy Won't Run the World", by Howard Hayden
(Vales Lake Publisher, 2005).

There is a review of this book at http://www.heartland.org/Article.cfm?artId=17185

--Rane L Curl

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