FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Wednesday, July 18, 2012
CONTACT: Ian Koski at 202-224-4216
Senator Coons helps relaunch bipartisan Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Caucus in Senate
Caucus will help educate about the benefits these clean-energy technologies can have on America’s energy innovation and security
WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Chris Coons (D-Del.), a member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, joined Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Lindsay Graham (R-S.C.), and John Hoeven (R-N.D.) to host a Senate policy briefing to re-launch the bipartisan Senate Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Caucus. The caucus will promote the continued development and commercialization of hydrogen and fuel cell technologies in the United States. The senators hosted the briefing to educate the public about the value of these clean energy technologies, which have helped to create 11,000 jobs in the United States.
"A truly secure energy future for the United States will depend largely on the diversity and availability of our energy sources," Senator Coons said. "Fuel cells and hydrogen-based technologies have enormous potential and should be an important part of our energy mix. They are already having an impact in Delaware, where Bloom Energy just broke ground on a new manufacturing facility that could eventually employ 900 people. This caucus is an opportunity not only to advocate for public and private investments in hydrogen and fuel cell technology, but to educate businesses and consumers about the important role they can play in our energy future."
The Senate Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Caucus existed previously in the Senate, but has been inactive since 2010. The new Senate Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Caucus will also include Senators Daniel Akaka (D-Hawaii), Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.), and John Tester (D-Mont.).
“Supporting and investing in fuel cell technologies in the United States is a no-brainer. This industry, led by Connecticut’s UTC Power and Fuel Cell Energy, supports nearly 3,000 clean energy jobs in Connecticut alone – and is growing by about 12 percent each year,” Senator Blumenthal said. “The industry also helps to reduce our reliance on foreign oil, and protect our environment with its zero-emissions technologies. I am proud to help lead the re-launch of this crucial bipartisan group, which will help to strengthen the fuel cell and hydrogen industry here at home.”
Fuel cell and hydrogen technologies create clean, efficient, “zero-emissions” energy and are currently utilized in commercial, residential, and governmental institutions throughout the United States. These technologies are powered by hydrogen and other resources readily available in the United States, which help to reduce the nation’s dependence on foreign oil. The United States is the world leader in fuel cell manufacturing, research, and development; however, fuel cell and hydrogen industries are becoming more popular abroad. The senators are rolling out the new bipartisan Senate Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Caucus to help demonstrate interest on Capitol Hill to maintain the United States’ leadership in this area, and to identify further policy and investment solutions to support these technologies, which have already created thousands of American jobs.