This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.

November 20, 2003

DOE Helps Launch the International Partnership for a Hydrogen Economy

Secretary of Energy Spencer Abraham joined with ministers representing 14 nations and the European Commission to establish the International Partnership for a Hydrogen Economy (IPHE) on November 20th. Representatives from Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, the European Commission, France, Germany, Iceland, India, Italy, Japan, Korea, Norway, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States signed the Terms of Reference, formally creating the IPHE as an international mechanism to coordinate hydrogen research and hydrogen technology development and deployment. The IPHE will provide a mechanism to organize, evaluate and coordinate multinational research, development, and deployment programs that advance the transition to a global hydrogen economy. See the DOE press release.

The spirit of cooperation also spilled over to the international fuel cell industry, as the world's leading fuel cell organizations agreed to start collaborations on information sharing, education, regulation, and technical exchange. The U.S. Fuel Cell Council (USFCC), the Fuel Cell Commercialization Conference of Japan, Fuel Cells Canada, the World Fuel Cell Council, and Fuel Cell Europe signed the agreement. The organizations collectively represent more than 300 businesses, research institutions, and others interested in fuel cells and hydrogen. See the joint press release on the USFCC Web site (PDF 19 KB) Download Acrobat Reader.

In addition, a coalition of hydrogen and fuel cell users and suppliers has come together to advance fuel-cell-powered buses. The National Fuel Cell Bus Technology Initiative is envisioned as a six-year, $150-million development effort to advance fuel cell and hydrogen technology. WestStart-CALSTART—a leading North American consortium for advanced transportation technologies—is coordinating the initiative. See the WestStart press release.