Recommendation 4-8. The senior DOE leadership should consider joining with their counterparts at U.S. DRIVE to work with non-U.S. DRIVE OEMs, equipment suppliers, electric utility leadership, and state regulators to build a uniform and stable policy environment for the deployment of electric charging infrastructure.


NRC Phase 3 Recommendation 4-1. The DOE should broaden the role of the fuel pathways integration technical team (FPITT) to include an investigation of the pathways to provide energy for all three approaches currently included in the Partnership. This broader role could include not only the current technical subgroups for hydrogen but also subgroups on biofuels utilization in advanced internal combustion engines and electricity generation requirements for PHEVs and BEVs, with appropriate industrial representation on each. The role of the parent FPITT would be to integrate the efforts of these subgroups and to provide an overall perspective of the issues associated with providing the required energy in a variety of scenarios that meet future personal transportation needs. [NRC, 2010, p. 118.]

The Partnership, while recognizing the importance of investigating all three approaches, has elected to maintain the FPITT’s focus on hydrogen. The current committee also believes that broader integration and coordination are needed, and it has in fact broadened its recommendation in the current report (current Recommendation 4-1).

NRC Phase 3 Recommendation 4-2. The DOE’s Fuel Cell Technologies program and the Office of Fossil Energy should continue to emphasize the importance of demonstrated CO2 disposal in enabling essential pathways for hydrogen production, especially for coal. [NRC, 2010, pp. 120-121.]

The DOE responded well to this recommendation in 2010. Although the Office of Fossil Energy and the Office of Fuel Cell Technologies continue to consider carbon when setting program priorities, the post-2010 availability of natural gas as a feedstock has diminished the urgency of demonstrating hydrogen from coal. (See Recommendation 4-3 in the current report.)

NRC Phase 3 Recommendation 4-3. The Fuel Cell Technologies program should adjust its Technology Roadmap to account for the possibility that CO2 sequestration will not enable a midterm readiness for commercial hydrogen production from coal. It should also consider the consequences to the program of apparent large increases in U.S. natural gas reserves. [NRC, 2010, p. 121.]

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