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EPA awarded a $10,000 grant to promote the use of fuel cells that will help improve air quality in Houston. The grant recipient, Houston Advanced Research Center (HARC), is a nonprofit organization working with ten universities and medical centers on fuel cell research and technology development.
HARC's goal, working with other Houston-based groups, is to develop a trading program for fuel cell emissions that will fit into a larger cap and trade program proposed by the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission (TNRCC) to help address smog in the Houston-Galveston area. TNRCC's cap and trade program would limit, or "cap," overall emissions, and allow companies to "trade" or sell emission credits when they reduce air pollution emissions beyond what is required. HARC is working to establish emission reduction rates for fuel cells so that they can be included in this cap and trade program. This project could help fuel cells become an important part of addressing air quality problems in Texas and accelerate the overall use of fuel cells in the marketplace.
Fuel cells chemically combine hydrogen and oxygen to provide clean electrical energy because they do not burn fossil fuels like coal, oil, or natural gas. HARC believes that fuel cells are an alternative to conventional electricity generation in Houston and other communities and could offer lower operating costs, increased reliability, and superior power quality.
For further technical information on this grant, contact, Teddi Brown of EPA's Region VI office in Dallas at 903-878-2346.
/U.S. Newswire 202-347-2770