Gov. Schwarzenegger at the SAE in April - click for a high res gallery
Previous reports of the death of California's hydrogen highway might have been premature. As part of the 1,700-mile 2009 Hydrogen Road Tour that is currently winding its way from California to Vancouver, BC, California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger made clear that his state strongly supports hydrogen vehicles and a hydrogen infrastructure, no matter what happens in Washington (and, well, things did happen). After all, the state is still spending money on H2 refueling stations ($6.8 million for four stations just last month) and has big plans for the future. Schwarzenegger told reporters that California will always support hydrogen. According to Green Car Advisor, he added:
And the reason why this is so important is that on the federal level, they [politicians] make decisions based on where the oil price is. That means that sometimes the federal government, when the oil price goes up, they go in the direction of renewable energy and alternate fuels. And when the oil price goes down, they abandon those policies. Well we don't do that here in California. We only march in one direction and that is forward. And we're not going to slow down. In 2010, we will have seven new hydrogen refueling stations in California and we will invest another $40 million over the next two years in hydrogen stations.Schwarzenegger did say that the state's budget crunch might slow the H2 roll-out, but was confident that private partners could be found to help build the hydrogen fueling stations.
[Source: Green Car Advisor]