While the talk about clean coal started under the Bush administration and has continued under the Obama administration, what has been neglected is the discussion concerning underground coal gasification (UCG). What this means is that many coal seams are too deep to mine.
So, in order to take advantage of these huge coal reserves companies could drill, inject oxygen or air and burn the coal to produce a hydrogen rich gas. This gas would be piped to the surface and the hydrogen separated from the carbon dioxide and used for fuel in cars.
The CO2 would then be sequestered and either sold on the open market or perhaps even be pumped back into the empty space 1,500 meters below the surface of the ground where the coal used to be. Or the CO2 could be used in abandoned oil wells to pumped more oil and be sequestered there.
This procedure would tap into a new source for coal that was previously thought to be unreachable. Since U. S. coal is plentiful and cheap right now this would give a low-cost solution to producing mass quantities of hydrogen.
The downside of underground coal gasification is that even though this would reduce our reliance upon foreign fossil fuels, we would still be reliant upon our own fossil fuels to create energy which cannot sustain itself more than 100+ years. Sequestering carbon safely in a tight seal among bedrock is another issue.
On the positive side this would create more U. S. jobs, and if done correctly would be clean technology plus this would supply large amounts of hydrogen cheaply for the future rollout of H2 cars. This may not be the ultimate solution for creating clean hydrogen such as wind, solar, geothermal or hydro electric, but this could be a short-term solution that will buy us time until the other renewable energy solutions advance in their technologies.