FUEL CELL by hcj

VIEWS: 249 PAGES: 14

No.19 Winter 2004-05

The first hydrogen fuel cell to provide electricity and hot water in a home in the UK was switched on in the West Midlands by the Mayor of Sandwell, Cllr Mrs Linda Turton.

For the first time in the UK, innovative hydrogen fuel cell technology is delivering both electrical power and hot water in the home, following the successful outcome of a two-year research project undertaken by the Black Country Housing & Community Services Group (BCH). Jeff Rooker, Minister for Regeneration and Regional Development, visited the newly completed home in Sandwell, West Midlands, to see for himself the new technology working.
The fuel cell system, supplied by Alternative Fuel Systems, incorporating a first generation cell from ZeTek plc, was switched on at one of BCH‟s new homes in Sandwell during November. The research work and trial has been part funded by The Department of Trade & Industry, with sponsorship from gas supplier BOC, who have provided the hydrogen fuel for the project. As a social landlord, BCH is planning for the future, as global warming is becoming an increasingly important issue and the security of essential gas and oil supplies is becoming less certain. A key aim of the research project was therefore to find out what needs to be done to ensure that fuel cell technology can successfully replace the use of carbon-based fuels, such as natural gas, in providing electrical power and hot water in the home. Fuel cells generate electricity by combining hydrogen gas with oxygen from the atmosphere in the presence of a metal catalyst and an electrolyte, which in this case is alkaline. As a result, the two gases react to form water, producing electricity and heat which can be used in the home. The heat is fed into a secondary hot water cylinder where it heats incoming cold water that is then passed into the normal hot water cylinder in the airing cupboard.

Meeting household demand
Part of the research project has been to find out if normal domestic electrical demand will cause enough heat to be generated to supply the hot water cylinders and whether it will be available when the householders need it. The electrical output is governed by the load imposed on the system by electrical appliances in the home and the more load there is, the more electricity and heat is produced. The maximum output of the system is 4.4 kW electricity and 3 kW heat although this was rarely required. During the trial 1.5 kW was generated for all the electrical demands, and sufficient heat was produced to do household laundry and to heat water to a temperature of 60°C - which is comparable to the typical thermal output of a solar water heating panel on a summer‟s day. Richard Baines, BCH‟s Project Leader for the fuel cell trial, said “Laboratory experiments and computer predictions suggest that, of all the alternatives for combined heat and power systems, fuel cell output could well be the „best fit‟ but the only way to be sure was to try it for real. Although other fuel cells are in use, this was the world‟s first fuel cell system capable of powering and heating the whole dwelling. Fuel cells are part of our energy future, they burn hydrogen to make electricity without any pollution. When hydrogen is eventually produced from water and not, as now, from fossil fuels, we can begin to help stop global warming and reduce our reliance on scarce and dirty carbon-based fuels like gas and oil.” 2

A revolutionary community project in the Shetlands is believed to be the first of its kind in Europe to be owned by the local community. Energy generated by wind turbines will be converted to hydrogen by the electrolysis of water. The hydrogen will be used for a variety of local applications, including generating power for a stationary fuel cell for lighting and heating units on an industrial estate and powering a fuel cell battery hybrid car developed by siGEN. Dave McGrath, SiGEN’s Managing Director, is excited by the potential for many other similar projects around Scotland, which would take advantage of their unmatched renewable resources, reduce the energy bills of the communities involved and take the lead in developing a hydrogen economy.

Rising fuel costs
Global warning is a serious issue for our children's generation and we must not leave it to them to pay for the damage caused by our use of energy. We are also facing a serious economic issue as energy demand world wide rises inexorably. $40-50 per barrel is only the start of it. There are many very well informed sources who believe the current oil and gas fields will not be able to keep up with demand. It is not that oil is running out (although it will) it is that the current oil fields will not be able to match the growing demand, probably within five to ten years. This is recognised in USA, Japan, China, Canada, and Germany and even in developing countries. The facts are there for analysis and unless drastic demand growth cuts are implemented, there will be a 60% rise in energy demand by 2020 and 250% by 2050 according to Shell. The northern and western peripheral regions of the UK, namely Scotland, already pay the highest costs for energy in the whole of Europe and they will suffer first from rising costs. Yet these regions have the highest concentrations of renewable energy from wind and marine sources and have one of the lowest energy density demands in Europe. These resources, not counting biofuels, are conservatively estimated at three times our total energy demand, both on and off the grid. 80% of Scotland's energy demand is met by non electrical grid sources, in petrol, kerosene, LPG and coal. The project will illustrate how wind and marine energy can be used to displace liquid fossil hydrocarbons by producing hydrogen. The variable costs of production are zero. We make hydrogen locally and we use it locally so there are minimal losses or costs associated with transport. The hydrogen can be combusted or used in fuel cells in technologies we can buy from all over the world. The money we would have spent on imported fossil hydrocarbons remains within the community. It is not cost effective today perhaps, but capital costs are dropping now and oil and gas prices are rising. The project is also progressive, creating new jobs for talented engineers. It will liberate communities from dependence on rising energy prices and possible future insecurity of international oil and gas markets and empower local communities who provide for their own energy needs.


Levy misappropriated?
Energy is the single most important commodity in the developed world and the UK Government is laggardly in dealing with the future. What is the £1,000 million raised every year from the Climate Change Levy spent on? Probably as little as 5% goes to tackle climate change and increasing numbers of companies and organisations are disillusioned by the Government‟s lack of support for new technologies. It is time that all of us involved with renewable energy, hydrogen and fuel cells joined together to ensure properly funded development programmes. Let us with a single voice demand action of our Government and demand that the climate change tax we are paying every day is used for what it is intended. siGEN Limited www.sigen.co.uk

Successful London trial
Transport for London has announced that initial tests of zero emission buses have been a success. Three hydrogen fuel cell buses are being trialled by London Buses on route RV1 (Covent Garden - Tower Gateway), in a bid to find a cleaner fuel for future buses and reduce pollution in the Capital. From January 2004 to the end of December 2004 the fuel cell buses had travelled over 23,000 miles, been in operation for nearly 3,400 hours and had excelled in reliability. The London Fuel Cell bus project is part of a wider European trial where zero emission hydrogen fuel cell vehicles are being evaluated over two years in ten capital cities. London Buses Director of Operations, Mike Weston said: “London Buses regards the first year of the fuel cell bus project as a great success. The buses have excelled in reliability and have been very popular with passengers who have appreciated the amazing environmental benefits of fuel cell technology and the quiet, smooth ride the buses offer. These trials are a positive indication that hydrogen fuel cells could offer an alternative to diesel in the future. The high cost of the vehicles is the major barrier at the moment but providing the Government continues to support this promising technology, it could be a viable option for the future.” First Group‟s fuel cell bus driver Sultan Dar said: “Passengers are always asking questions about the benefits of the fuel cell bus and when I tell them they are always really supportive of the trial. I am very proud to be an essential part of this trial as this technology will benefit our environment substantially - its something I‟ll tell the grandkids about!” Richard Tarboton, Head of Business Unit Transport Energy, part of the Energy Saving Trust said: “The success of this trial to date demonstrates the real opportunity offered by hydrogen fuel cell technology.”

Hydrogen for buses
Hydrogen to power the buses in London and several other cities is being provided by BP and BOC. The hunt is on for a fuel that is abundant and non-polluting and BP and many others believe that this fuel could be hydrogen. The world is becoming ever more conscious of the impact of human activities on the environment. From urban air pollution to global warming, concern is expressed about the impact emissions are having on our environment. Yet as the world develops humanity will need more energy and as demand increases, so do concerns about security of energy supply. 4

BP believes that those who know most about fossil fuels (hydrocarbons) have already been proceeding towards a „Hydrogen Economy‟ - for hydrogen is the last stop on a long road towards cleaner fuels. As the production and use of energy has become more sophisticated, the carbon content of fuels has been in decline. Coal was the foundation fuel of the industrial society, and then oil took on the task. Now we are using much more natural gas. Each fuel is less polluting than the last because it contains less impurities and less carbon and, crucially, more hydrogen. So, in the search for a cleaner source of energy, the final culmination may be hydrogen on its own. The technology is being developed around the world to make this possible and when hydrogen is combined with the technology of the fuel cell to generate electrical energy, its immense potential to transform our global needs for stationary and motive power in a more environmentally benign way is irresistible.

BP provides the hydrogen for the buses in London and other European cities, as well as for three fuel cell buses in Perth, Australia.

London Hydrogen Partnership
As well as supporting the hydrogen powered buses in London, the London Hydrogen Partnership aims to accelerate activities that will improve air quality and reduce greenhouse gases and noise in London. It will also improve energy security and contribute to the growth of London‟s green economy through the development of hydrogen and fuel cell related industry and employment. Fuel Cell Power is a member of the London Hydrogen Partnership and proposes that we should aim to have a basic hydrogen infrastructure in London by 2010 to 2012 to service stationary applications as well as vehicle fleets. It would also assist London‟s bid to host the 2012 Olympics. Energy efficient buildings could incorporate CHP systems, fuel cells, solar panels and small wind turbines. We could be the first to benefit from innovative British technologies such as Hydrogen Solar‟s panels, which convert sunlight directly to hydrogen, as well as Cenergie‟s alkaline fuel cells and the intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cell from Ceres Power Ltd. London is one of the most progressive cities in the world, which has already taken action to reduce traffic congestion, and bold action is now needed to take a world lead in initiating a hydrogen infrastructure.


General Motors (GM) is the first customer at the retail site in Washington D.C., which will service a fleet of six of their fuel cell vehicles. The hydrogen station is the centre piece of a partnership between Shell and GM to develop hydrogen-fuelled vehicles on a commercial scale. They are also working together on the U.S. Department of Energy's Infrastructure Demonstration and Validation Project. The Shell Hydrogen station is part of a collaboration between Shell and General Motors to demonstrate fuel cell vehicles as well as the refuelling infrastructure. It is an important contribution towards making fuel cell vehicles an everyday reality. Shell will offer both compressed and liquid hydrogen.

"Today marks the next major step in Shell Hydrogen's effort to make a substantial advance and move research further into reality," said Jeremy Bentham, chief executive officer of Shell Hydrogen. "The station in Washington, D.C. represents a real-world urban-driving scenario to demonstrate hydrogen cars and refuelling." According to Larry Burns, General Motors‟ vice president of research and development and planning, the only way the hydrogen economy will come about is if local communities, government, energy companies and automotive companies work together. “We need not only fuel cell vehicles, but also convenient places to refuel and local communities that will support this transition to a new energy source. I want to applaud both the local community and Shell on this important milestone. The opening of this station is a historic moment. We will look back on this day and realize that it was a watershed moment - the moment when we started down a new path to a future where we have readily available hydrogen, made from renewable feedstocks, to power our vehicles and energize our economy.”

Outline programme for hydrogen infrastructure
Shell has a clear business strategy for the hydrogen market, said Shell Hydrogen CEO Bentham. "To meet our customers' wishes for this attractive fuel, we're focused today on large scale demonstration projects - what we call `Lighthouse Projects' - that create mini-networks of hydrogen fuelling stations in specific cities or regions of the country. These „Lighthouse Projects‟ will bring together governments and several energy and auto companies to hasten full commercialization of hydrogen as a transportation fuel." 6

Shell has developed a realistic understanding of the importance of hydrogen and the steps necessary to make this happen. The following is Shell's step-by-step approach to development of the hydrogen mass market: Step One - Stand-alone projects with restricted access, like depots for hydrogenfuelled buses Step Two - Sites with public access, but separate from existing gasoline stations, such as the facility Shell opened in Iceland which supplies hydrogen made from water to three city buses Step Three-Fully integrated fuel stations (traditional fuels and hydrogen) Step Four - Mini-network „Lighthouse Projects‟. Semi-commercial, public-private partnerships involving multiple energy companies, governments and fleets of 100 or more vehicles. Step five - 2010-2020 connecting the mini-networks with corridors and filling in the spaces. "We are now celebrating the achievement of the third step, and are moving forward to realize steps four and five," said Bentham. "We need to accelerate the process today by co-ordinating with government leaders and the public in order to build effective public-private partnerships and realize semi-commercial Lighthouse Projects. Based on our analysis, Lighthouse Projects should include:      Fleets building up to 100 vehicles and beyond Fuelled from mini-networks of 4-6 integrated hydrogen/gasoline stations Have both semi-commercial and publicly subsidized elements Focus on transportation in urbanized area Have a high visibility so that people can see the miracle of hydrogen technology with their own eyes. It mustn't be only something they read about.”

GM’s hydrogen fuel cell vehicles
The GM fuel cell minivans have been driving in normal everyday traffic around the nation's capital for more than a year. In separate initiatives, the United States Postal Service has been delivering mail using a GM fuel cell minivan, which GM refers to as the HydroGen3. The State of Maryland has also announced a similar lease with GM. Last month, GM and its partner in China announced they would be delivering a fuel cell vehicle to Shanghai early next year. GM also operates a small fuel cell fleet in California. Shell Hydrogen companies already have fuel cell demonstration projects in Japan and Europe. www.gm.com. www.shell.com/hydrogen 7

RENEWABLE ENERGY AND FUEL CELLS Cost effective wind power
At the opening ceremony of the European Wind Energy Conference in London, Patricia Hewitt, the UK Secretary of State for Trade and Industry, said that by 2010 wind would be powering one in six UK households. At that time, the target of the European Wind Energy Association (EWEA) is to install in Europe 75 gigawatts (GW) electrical generating capacity, that is 75 million kilowatts. The cost of producing electricity from wind power has reduced by over 50% in the past fifteen years and it is anticipated that if the EWEA target is met by 2010, this would enable the cost to be reduced to 3.9 to 5.2 €cents per kWh. These calculations take no account of the environmental benefits of wind power which are projected to save EU countries €25 billion annually by 2020. If the environmental costs were levied on polluting electricity generators, many renewables, including wind power, would not need any Government support. The President of the European Wind Energy Association, Professor Arthouros Zervos, said at the closing of the conference. “Europe is the world leader in wind energy, a technology that is vital to help address the issues of security of supply, oil and gas price instability, sustainable development and climate change, as well as providing economic growth, technological progress and creating employment and exports. In two decades, Europe will be importing 70% of its energy, up from 50% today. Europe faces an energy crunch, and wind power can help deliver a solution”

Small renewables, hydrogen and fuel cells
The Grünhaus Project is being developed in Liverpool in a war damaged building in conjunction with a UNA project and the Liverpool City of Culture 2008 proposals. This is to provide technical and financial information about efficient and clean energy technologies, as well as an exhibition area and teaching and demonstration facilities. A large paper database is already in existence, with links to other information sources covering biomass, fuel cells, geothermal, solar, thermoelectric, tidal, wave, wind, and other sustainable technologies including heat pumps. It is planned to develop the energy self sufficient building with facilities to evaluate energy technologies so that information can be provided on the most efficient and cost effective solutions. For instance, small contra-rotating wind turbines are reportedly 40% more efficient than single rotors. Their use for distributed electricity generation would obviate losses in the grid and surplus energy could be stored as hydrogen and re-used on site to provide both heat and power. Dye solar cells (DSC) would also be evaluated as they are reportedly more economic than silicon PV.


For long term energy sustainability, the best approach is to ensure that as far as possible all buildings are energy self sustaining, and as energy efficient as possible. The financial barrier to this is that the private individual cannot offset the capital costs against his tax liabilities, albeit there are some subsidies available. Companies installing wind turbines and other renewable energy equipment get considerable subsidies from taxpayers and, if then profitable, can amortise whatever capital monies they put in against their profits tax liabilities. www.users.care4free.net/~ferrand

General Motors of Canada Limited and Hydrogenics Corporation are demonstrating that commercially viable hydrogen-powered industrial vehicles are closer to the market than many people think. Currently, industrial vehicles contribute almost 13 per cent of the global total of transportation-related greenhouse gas emissions. Hydrogenics believes that one of the first commercial uses for hydrogen powered vehicles will be in industrial vehicle fleets, such as forklifts, where on-site refuelling stations can meet immediate refuelling needs. Fuel cell-powered forklifts are ideal for indoor facilities, such as factories and warehouses, because they produce no exhaust emissions. Hydrogenics, in partnership with GM Canada, demonstrated the hydrogen fuel cell-powered forklift and a HyLYZER hydrogen refuelling station. Because the refuelling station is compact, with easy connection points, it can be transported easily from site to site. It can produce a variable amount of hydrogen, depending on requirements, and it can refuel a forklift in a fraction of the time that the batteries can be changed or recharged on a battery-powered unit.

Manure powers fuel cell!
A 5 kW fuel cell has been added to an evaluation project at Haubenschild Farm near Princeton, Minnesota, with assistance from the Minnesota Department of Agriculture. The family owned dairy farm has been getting its electricity from an anaerobic manure digester, which gives environmental benefits while offering a return on their investment. Haubenschild Farms entered into a power purchase contract proposed by the local electric cooperative, East Central Energy. They have been producing enough electricity to provide all their electricity needs, plus enough surplus electricity to power about 75 additional homes. The project is evaluated by Minnesota University.

1 MW fuel cell for Sheraton San Diego Hotel & Marina
FuelCell Energy has formed a joint venture with Alliance Power to provide fuel cells for Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide. The first project is to install a one


megawatt fuel cell in the Sheraton San Diego Hotel & Marina, the fourth hotel employing FuelCell Energy's 'ultra-clean' Direct FuelCell technology. Four 250kilowatt DFC power plants will supply base load electricity for the 1,044-room hotel and the heat byproduct will be used for the hotel's Lagoon Pool. The California Public Utilities Commission created its Self-generation Incentive Programme to encourage customers of electrical corporations to install distributed generation that operates on renewable fuel and/or contributes to system reliability. The program currently runs through 2007 and provides up to $67 million per year in incentive funding for ultra-clean and renewable generators, including fuel cells. Finance for the project is based on power purchase agreements and FuelCell Energy and Alliance Power expect that as their portfolio grows it will become more attractive to the financial markets, and they will then seek third party financing.

Breaking ground on Florida’s Hydrogen Highway
Florida‟s Governor Jeb Bush joined Ford Motor Company Chairman and CEO Bill Ford and executives from ChevronTexaco Corporation and Progress Energy Florida to break ground on the state‟s first hydrogen energy station which will fuel eight Ford hydrogen powered shuttle buses transporting visitors at Orlando Airport. Florida is at the cutting-edge of hydrogen energy transportation. As part of another project, Ford and BP America last spring selected the Sunshine State as one of only three sites nationwide to demonstrate hydrogen fuel cell cars and fuelling stations. The Ford Focus Fuel Cell Vehicles will be used by park rangers at Wekiwa Springs State Park and customer service representatives at Progress Energy Florida.

Hydrogen on the fast track
The BMW Group believes that hydrogen can replace conventional fuel without requiring the driver to forego the dynamic performance of a modern conventional vehicle. It is already well-known that hydrogen is a particularly clean and environmentally friendly fuel for driving a motor vehicle. Now the BMW Group has proven impressively on its high-speed test track in France that the combustion engine running on hydrogen also offers enormous dynamic potential, and their H2R Record car has set up nine world records for hydrogen-powered vehicles Today hydrogen is considered to be an important new dimension in automobiles in terms of efficiency, environmental impact and safety. Wolfgang Strobl, who developed BMW‟s CleanEnergy Fleet of 15 hydrogen powered cars, said that hydrogen solves the problem of our dependence on fossil fuels, giving us a completely environmentally friendly fuel. BMW is preparing for series production of hydrogen engines and they are also working on achieving twice the power density of conventional motors.


Vijay Vaitheeswaran, The Economist‟s Environment and Energy Correspondent gave a lively presentation at the launch in London of his book entitled POWER to the People, which is essential reading for everyone who wants to be well informed about global energy. He explains how monolithic electricity generation structures were built up during the last century and why they could now be superseded by efficient micro generators in a free world market. Subsidies to fossil fuels have also held back investment in new energy technologies. Vaitheeswaran examines the economic arguments for and against taking action to deal with global warming and explains that it is sudden change which is most damaging to the profitability of investments and that US industries would be better off if their Government initiated a long term framework within which they could start to invest in cleaner technologies. Although the needlessly dirty and inefficient way we use energy is the single most destructive thing we do to the environment, there are three powerful trends that give hope; the liberalization of energy markets; the growing appeal of environmentalism and the surge of technological innovation in areas such as hydrogen fuel cells. Earthscan 2005, ISBN 1-84407-176-6

Micro hydrogen fuel cell
Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corporation (NTT) have developed a prototype micro polymer-electrolyte fuel cell (PEFC) that uses hydrogen gas as a fuel and is small enough to directly fit in a mobile phone. Utilizing hydrogen gas as a fuel, the PEFC attains a high output power compatible with that of a lithium-ion battery and has the advantage that, unlike the Direct Methanol Fuel Cell, it does not produce CO2. As a result of unifying the power-generation unit and the hydrogen-storage alloy tank and simplifying electrical circuitry, the PEFC is very compact and weighs only 104g, which makes it suitable for directly fitting into a mobile phone, and enables a talk time of nine hours. Furthermore, by changing the surface area of the PEFC's powergeneration part, it is possible to apply the PEFC to a wide variety of mobile electronic devices like video cameras, digital cameras, PDAs, and notebook PCs.

Cost effective hydrogen production
BOC, Membrane Reactor Technologies (MRT) and HERA Hydrogen Storage Systems Inc. have been awarded a US Department of Energy grant to develop an advanced hydrogen generation and delivery system. MRT‟s patented process combines the reforming of hydrocarbons, shift conversion and the purification of hydrogen in one simple, cost-effective step. The system achieves higher yields of pure hydrogen than conventional reformers, delivers very high-purity hydrogen and can be used from small scale up to large industrial applications. Hydrogen can be obtained from many renewable and sustainable feedstocks, including synthesis gas from coal or biomass, landfill gas and anaerobic digestor gas from wastewater treatment.


The use of fuel cells contributes to reductions in global warming gases, as they are generally twice as efficient as an engine. They can be utilised on the site where the electricity is generated, so that the heat which is wasted in large central power stations can be utilised. Fuel cells can also be used to store energy from intermittent sources, such as wind or sunshine. Investment now in renewable energy, backed up where appropriate with hydrogen fuel cells, would contribute to reducing future C02 emissions, particularly in developing countries where they have no established electricity infrastructure.

DEFRA joins with Met office
The International Conference on Stabilisation of Greenhouse Gases – Avoiding Dangerous Climate Change – took place, at the invitation of the British Prime Minister, Tony Blair, and under the sponsorship of the UK Department of Environment (DEFRA) at the Met Office, Exeter, in February. The world needs to make radical changes in how it generates and uses energy to combat climate change, Environment Secretary, Margaret Beckett, told the international conference of scientists. The extent to which it might be possible to identify an optimum response, avoiding both dangerous impacts and unacceptable mitigation costs was examined. Major investment is needed now in both mitigation and adaptation in order to minimise future impacts. All these aspects were covered in detail at the three day symposium and the full papers can be found at www.stabilisation2005.com In March, Margaret Beckett and Hilary Benn will co-host a meeting of Environment and Development Ministers in Derbyshire as part of the UK‟s Presidency of the G8 group of industrialised countries. The Prime Minister has made climate change and Africa the twin priorities of the UK‟s Presidency of G8 and they will be the focus of the G8 Summit at Gleneagles in July.





As chair of the G8, the Prime Minister should seek agreement to create a G8-Plus Climate Group to engage the US and major developing countries in action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, according to a high-level taskforce established by the Institute for Public Policy Research (ippr), the Centre for American Progress and the Australia Institute. The Task-force is jointly chaired by the Rt Hon Stephen Byers MP and US Republican Senator Olympia Snowe. Such a group would provide a way for G8 countries and other major economies - including India and China - to take action that would lead to large-scale reductions in emissions. The Taskforce calls on governments to agree to a long-term objective of preventing global temperature from rising by more than 2oC above pre-industrial levels. The G8-Plus Climate Group would pursue partnerships to achieve immediate deployment of existing low-carbon energy technologies and the creation of a leadership coalition of countries to move ahead with reforms to boost investment in climate-friendly energy technologies worldwide


World’s largest climate change experiment
The first results from climateprediction.net, a global experiment using computing time donated by the general public, show that average temperatures could eventually rise by up to 11°C, more than double the maximum warming so far considered likely by the Inter-Governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), even if carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere are limited to twice those found before the industrial revolution. Such levels are expected to be reached around the middle of this century unless deep cuts are made in greenhouse gas emissions. Climateprediction.net is a collaboration between several UK Universities and The Met Office, led by the University of Oxford and funded by the Natural Environment Research Council and the Department of Trade and Industry. The project involves more than 95,000 people who have downloaded the free climateprediction.net software which incorporates the Met Office‟s climate model and runs in the background when their computers lie idle. Participants have simulated over four million model years and donated over 8,000 years of computing time, making climateprediction.net easily the world's largest climate modelling experiment. This allows the project to explore a wide range of uncertainties, picking up previously unidentified high-impact possibilities. The figure shows the change in globally averaged surface temperature after carbon dioxide values in the atmosphere are doubled. The black lines show the 15 years from climateprediction.net runs and the red lines show comparable results from simulations on the Met Office supercomputer. Scientists at Oxford are urging more people to become involved. Chief Scientist for climateprediction.net, David Stainforth, said: “Our experiment shows that increased levels of greenhouse gases could have a much greater impact on climate than previously thought. Having found that these extreme responses are a realistic possibility, we need people‟s support to pin down the risk of such strong warming and understand its impacts.”

Climate change costs
The insurers, Munich Re, announce that 2004 was the costliest natural disaster year for the insurance industry, with losses of US$ 40bn, mainly attributed to devastating hurricanes and typhoons. Including uninsured losses, the total for natural disasters was $130 billion for the year. These weather extremes underline their long-standing demand for prompt and rigorous measures against climate change, but after the disappointing outcome of the recent climate summit in Buenos Aires, time is running out. We are at the beginning of a global process of climate change which will develop into a serious danger for future generations if we do not adopt radical measures soon at political social and economic levels. www.munichre.com


Clean Energy Technology & Investment Show
5th – 7th May, .The conference and exhibition at the London Business Design Centre will provide a European focus as London pioneers environmental transport policies. The exhibition will include fuel cells for automotive applications. LPB Events Ltd, 18 King Edward Buildings, 629 Fulham Road, London SW6 5UH. Tel. 020 7751 9998 info@clean-energy-expo.com www.clean-energy-expo.com

Delivering Sustainable Solutions

24th – 26th May. Fifth Annual Climate Change Solutions Conference, NEC, th Birmingham. 25 May whole day featuring fuel cells and hydrogen, with a range of international speakers and presentations including partnering forum. Contact: Tony McNally, Climate Change Solutions Ltd, 024 7623 6623 tony@climate-change-solutions.co.uk

Fuel Cells For A Sustainable World & 3rd European Polymer Electrolyte Fuel Cell Forum
4th – 8th July. The conferences organized by the European Fuel Cell Forum will take place at the Kultur-und Kongresszentrum Luzern, Switzerland . European Fuel Cell Forum, P.O. Box 99, CH-5452, Oberrohrdorf, Switzerland. Tel: +41 56 496 7292 Fax: +41 56 496 4412 forum@efcf.com www.efcf.com

Ninth Grove Fuel Cell Symposium and Exhibition

4th – 6th October at the Queen Elizabeth II Conference Centre in London. With over 500 delegates at the last event, the Grove Symposium has grown to be the largest and most comprehensive fuel cell event in Europe. The Ninth Grove Fuel Cell Symposium will cover the real and rapid progress made in the development of fuel cell industries and the infrastructure to support them, resulting in viable fuel cell power generation for both mobile and stationary applications across a wide range of sectors. The deadline for submitting a poster is 30th June. The event is organized by Elsevier and will cover : Commercial and industrial applications for stationary fuel cells Enabling commercialising: Fuels: Portable applications Power for consumer electronics: Residential combined heat and power Transport: road vehicles : propulsion and auxiliary power units Gill Heaton, Grove Fuel Cell Conference Secretariat, Hillside Cottages, Wheatley Road, Islip, Oxford, OX5 2TF. Pam Chattin, Grove Exhibition Organiser +44 (0) 1322 663006 pamchattin@aol.com www.grovefuelcell.com



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