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The Hydrogen Experiment

The Hydrogen Experiment

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Published by: Daisy on Nov 18, 2008
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12/28/2012

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The HydrogenExperiment
by Seth Dunn
O RLDWATCHN S T I T U T E
WIW
1776 Massachusetts Ave., NWWashington, DC 20036www.worldwatch.org
W
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Working For A Sustainable Future
W
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Reprinted from W
ORLD
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, November/December 2000 © 2000 Worldwatch Institute
 
14
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November/ December 2000
 In Reykjavík, Iceland, scientists, politicians, and business leadershave conspired to put into motion a grand experiment that mayend the countrys—and the world’s—reliance on fossil fuels forever.The island has committed to becoming the world’s first hydrogeneconomy over the next 30 years.
The HydrogenExperimentThe HydrogenExperiment
 
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November/December 2000
15
iding from the airport to Iceland
scapital, Reykjav
í 
k, gives one the sen-sation of having landed on themoon. Black lava rocks cover themostly barren landscape, which isarticulated by craters, hills, and mountains.Other parts of the island are covered by athin layer of green moss. American astro-nauts traveled here in the 1960s to practicewalking the lunar surface, defining rock types, and taking specimens.I, too, have traveled here on a journey of sorts to a new world
a world that is pow-ered not by oil, coal, and other pollutingfossil fuels, but one that relies primarily onrenewable resources for energy and onhydrogen as an energy carrier, producingelectricity with only water and heat asbyproducts. My quest has brought me tothe cluttered office of Bragi
Á
rnason, achemistry professor at the University of Iceland whose 30-year-old plan to run hiscountry on hydrogen energy has recentlybecome an official objective of his govern-ment, to be achieved over the next 30 years.
I think we could be a pilot country, givinga vision of the world to come,
he says tome with a quiet conviction and a deep, blue-
by Seth Dunn
ILLUSTRATION BY JANET HAMLIN

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