In August 2007, I talked about Iceland’s desire to become the world’s first hydrogen society. With the country’s vast geothermal and hydro power plus a handful of H2 cars, buses and a Shell Hydrogen fueling station, Iceland was poised to do just this.
But, then in October 2008 Iceland’s economic future fell into chaos as their overextended banks started failing and the government stepped into take control. Now, Iceland’s hydrogen dreams have to be pushed back at least 10 years for its anticipated economic recovery.
And, this time-frame is not solely dependent upon it own dire economic situation, but is also connected to the failing of the large U. S. automakers such as GM and Chrysler. Japanese and German automakers such as Toyota, Nissan, Daimler and BMW are still a source of hope, however.
Hertz Rental Cars of Iceland is still offering converted Toyota Priuses to travelers and Iceland even has a ship called Elding powered by hydrogen. But, with the unemployed in Iceland revolting and the government on shaky ground, hydrogen cars will have to wait until the country becomes more stabilized.
At that point air quality and energy independence may once again become to priorities.