Pat Valente, executive director of the
Ohio Fuel Cell Coalition
, is convinced that fuel cells are the future of energy. The OFCC is a group of industry, academic and government leaders who seek to propel Ohio into a global leadership position in fuel cell technology.
Ohio has a competitive advantage in fuel cell technology, says Valente. “We have the supply chain (components), a skilled workforce, and ongoing research on college campuses and in business. We like to say that every fuel cell manufactured in the U.S. has an Ohio component.”
Valente touts the clean energy of hydrogen fuel cells. “The only emission that comes out of the tailpipe is water vapor,” he says, referring to the use of fuel cells in vehicles.
But fuel cells aren’t just for cars, trucks and buses anymore. Honda is working on an advanced fuel cell that could power a conventional household for six days. Stationary fuel cells are in the works that can power a shopping center or a small community, completely off the grid.
In late April, Valente was preparing for the Ohio Fuel Cell Symposium, which took place from May 1st-2nd at Lorain County Community College
. “We’re expecting Honda, GM, Daimler, Hundaii, and Toyota,” among others. He thinks government needs to step up with stricter emission requirements, which would further encourage the fuel cell technology.
With a rising middle class in China and India, Valente believes it’s just a matter of time before the oil runs out to power all those cars. “We need wind, solar, fuel cells, a little bit of everything. “
Source: Pat Valente
Writer: Catherine Podojil