Serious Environmental Impacts Of Hydrogen Vehicles
“If we are to go on living together on this Earth, we must all be responsible for it” — Kofi Annan
George W. Bush used to say that fuel-cell cars will be free of pollution. But if he has his way, the cars of tomorrow will run on hydrogen made from fossil fuels.
In fact, the 43rd U.S. President had deliberately ignored the serious environmental impacts of generating hydrogen; and he ignored how the environment has been changing since the Industrial Revolution when fossil fuel exploitation started to explode.
Hydrogen fuel and its myths
Theoretically, a hydrogen fuel cell car is a type of electric car which runs on a motor powered by electricity. But, instead of using a battery, a hydrogen car is equipped with a device that takes hydrogen and generates electricity from it while the car is running.
Although hydrogen is the most basic of all Earth elements, it takes a lot of work to separate hydrogen gas from its companion substances. Moreover, leakage of the hydrogen gas that can fuel such cars could cause problems for the upper atmosphere, according to the new research from the California Institute of Technology.
More precisely, if hydrogen were to replace fossil fuels entirely, 60 to 120 trillion grams of hydrogen would be released each year into the atmosphere. This is four to eight times as much hydrogen as is currently released into the atmosphere by human activity, and this would result in doubling or tripling of inputs into the atmosphere from all sources, natural or human.
“Because molecular hydrogen freely moves up and mixes with stratospheric air, the result would be the creation of additional water at high altitudes and, consequently, an increased dampening of the stratosphere. This in turn would result in cooling of the lower stratosphere and disturbance of ozone chemistry,” said in the report of CalTech.
Hydrogen is extremely powerful. We all know the effects of the hydrogen bombs that were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in WWII. It’s highly inflammable and always in the news for the potential risks associated with it.
And while we’ve been trying to reduce our dependency on fossil fuels, unfortunately, we still depend on them to produce hydrogen fuel. According to the administration’s National Hydrogen Energy Roadmap, up to 90 percent of all hydrogen will be refined from oil, natural gas, and other fossil fuels. Needless to say, hydrogen is just a new game that is created by people who have been benefiting from the industry of fossil fuel exploitation. Therefore, it’s simply not worth doing, environmentally or economically.
“We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children” — Native American Proverb