I last talked about Bruce Freeman’s Big Buy Strategy for rolling out hydrogen cars and infrastructure in Minnesota in February 2009. I’ve touched base with Mr. Freeman recently to see if he was making any headway with his plan.
Unfortunately, Mr. Freeman had been frustrated with the lack of enthusiasm from politicians and other decision makers in Minnesota, so he had decided to move on and start life anew in Colorado. Yet, Mr. Freeman still has many good ideas for how we need to jump start the American public and go full steam ahead with getting the word out about the merits of hydrogen cars.
Here is what Mr. Freeman has to say:
“I still believe more than ever that electrifying the automobile, and all engines for that matter, is the future and that man-made batteries are really bad. I also believe that most supporters of hydrogen are not using the right way (stories) to sell the concept to the American people. I believe we need to tell different kinds of stories,
“The first story is a love story. It is the story of water. The basis of all life on this beautiful blue planet is water and even more specifically the atomic bond between hydrogen and oxygen is the basis of all life on this planet. It is through this intense love of a atomic bond for each other that God created us. It is that love, that everlasting bond that we can tap to power our future. You take water, you split it apart and it madly wants to recombine into the magic elixir I believe there is magic in that bond and that we can learn the secrets of that bond. Think of the computer revolution, Everything is based on off/on, 1’s and zeros. That simplistic concept has powered a revolution. I believe the same holds true for an energy revolution based on together/apart, together/apart.
“The second story is a gas station in every garage, just as a computer in every home, a worldwide phone in every hand. Every American home already has the 2 ingredients needed to assert control of their energy lives, cheap water and cheap electricity and even more importantly wasted water and wasted electricity. What they are missing is a new appliance. An electrolyizer / hydrogen refueler. Think of the combined GNP of all the oil companies in the world. An energy revolution based on hydrogen and natural electricity slowly moves that GNP from the few to the many. A new approach to energy empowers the individual, just as the information revolution has empowered the individual. Hydrogen based electrical storage from a green decentralized grid creates the opportunity to make everyone energy rich. To move past limitations of geographical oil wealth to the energy abundance of the universe.
“The third story is about financing. The great economic meltdown was at its core about bad financing. The wealthy had tried to create new methods of financing that increased the flow of money to them. A new financing is based on creating new buying tools for the middle class that redirects existing money they are already spending and use it to pay for their long term energy independence. Americans watched for months as raw crude poured into the gulf and I ask how can I get my share of BP. Not as an investor but how can I get my share of their assets. How can I move energy production assets from them to me. How can I become energy rich. Financing the buying power is key. Look at every industry in America. Aren’t they all constantly coming up ways to buy more of their products thru financing tools. Creating financing packages for individuals and cities and counties and states to buy fuel cell cars, refuelers, and smart grid upgrades.
“The fourth story is about how the story of America is in the story of how we make our goods and services. It is what we create that counts. I believe in taxing externalities instead of income. In other words taxing problems to pay for solutions. Example is the gulf oil mess. Oil for gasoline obviously has other costs to it besides extraction, refining, and transporting. Those cost passed onto society subsidize the status quo. Only by taxing those types of problems to recapture those costs and then invest the tax revenues in other types of energy production by creating financing packages for the consumer. I’m not explaining this well.
“The last story is the kind of story you’re telling, success stories. Look at all the great stuff that people have created. We have the solutions, what we lack is a coherent market response.”