Interesting Juxtaposition

How about this? Last week a team of CalTech researchers released results indicating that hydrogen power may harm the earth’s stratosphere, primarily through the increase in nitrogen in the air that would reduce ozone accumulation. Other stories on this study are at Yahoo!, the Associated Press, Nature, the San Francisco Chronicle, and the CBC.

Then yesterday the federal government announces that they will pursue their hydrogen partnership with the EU. This Washington Post story and this AP story build off of a speech that Secretary Spencer Abraham gave at a hydrogen conference in Brussels (but which is not yet available at According to the AP story:

Whether hydrogen is produced from nuclear reactors or from coal-burning power plants, “we intend that all our hydrogen eventually be produced using emissions-free technologies,” said Abraham. In one program to make hydrogen, he cited as an example, the Energy Department wants to pursue a $1 billion program to build a pollution-free coal burning power plant where carbon dioxide and other emissions would be captured.

How economically unsound is this?

If you’re interested in hydrogen, you may be interested in this five-part series at Reason that I wrote in March.