Table of Contents

Innovation, Markets and Sustainable Energy

Innovation, Markets and Sustainable Energy

The Challenge of Hydrogen and Fuel Cells

Edited by Stefano Pogutz, Angeloantonio Russo and Paolo Migliavacca

Innovation, Markets and Sustainable Energy is the first attempt to explore fuel cells and hydrogen technologies by embracing a solid theoretical perspective in the field of innovation and management. Adopting a cross-sectional and international perspective, the book analyzes the implications of introducing fuel cells into the industrial system and explores the complexity of market development for new technological solutions.

Introduction

Edited by Stefano Pogutz, Angeloantonio Russo and Paolo Migliavacca

Subjects: economics and finance, environmental economics, environment, climate change, environmental economics, innovation and technology, technology and ict

Extract

In a time of environmental crisis, with the future of our energy sources still questionable, the awareness and concern of global society is increasing. There is a search for new technological solutions to reduce our ecological footprint and decrease our dependence on hydrocarbons. Over the last decade, hydrogen and fuel cell technologies have emerged as a potential solution, a means of transition to a more sustainable economy that has stimulated expectations as well as debate in the scientific and political community. On the one hand, a possible transition to a ‘hydrogen economy’ appeals to the public, who are optimistic about the ‘healing’ properties of these technologies. On the other hand, a sceptical opinion on hydrogen and fuel cell technology has been shared by several decisionmakers, economists and scientists who consider the ‘hydrogen economy’ as a sea change in our energy infrastructure, with unclear and uncertain societal and environmental results. Despite such divergent reactions, the last fifteen years can be considered as a watershed period for the hydrogen and fuel cell industry. Several countries have begun to develop public policies, legislation and R&D plans to sustain and promote the diffusion of these technologies in both transportation and stationary contexts (McDowall and Eames, 2006; Solomon and Banerjee, 2006). Many energy companies, in collaboration with local officials, have been actively building hydrogen infrastructure. For example, according to Fuel Cell Today (Huleatt-James, 2008), around 200 hydrogen refuelling stations are expected by the end of 2008, compared with close to 50 in 2003. Many...