Shell Permanently Shuts Down its California Hydrogen Stations

I never, ever understood the hydrogen car crowd. The fantasy of building a giant sprawling hydrogen generation and supply infrastructure, another horribly centralized yet unstable model of high risk energy, seemed totally nuts. Here are a couple of my old blog posts, if you see what I mean.

Perhaps they could rename hydrogen-based combustion engines as “farcicles”…so we can go riding on a farcicle built for four.

Fast forward to today, and Shell is abruptly killing the hydrogen dream.

Shell to permanently close all of its hydrogen refuelling stations for cars in California … Shell had last September told Hydrogen Insight that it had “discontinued its plan to build and operate additional light-duty vehicle fueling stations in California”, effectively scrapping the 48 new sites it had previously announced it would build.

Picture this: Shell accepting $40.6 million in grant money from California, only to close operations shortly thereafter. It seems like Shell accepted the funds as a gesture to politicians who expect now to be receiving that money back from Shell for upcoming elections.

“Just a quick signature boys to rob the taxpayers and then I’m off to cheat on my wife”. The California Governor “loved” hydrogen in 2004.

The flow reflects hydrogen serving mainly as a politically corrupt system. Climate attention and energy resources are unjustly diverted by wealthy incumbents into scams (e.g. toxic hydrogen, broken hyperloop, dead Tesla-tunnels) in order to deny practical and secure initiatives.

What a farcicle.

Perhaps ironically there is a buried lede in this long running disaster. Smaller engineering fraud stories are bubbling up within the larger hydrogen supply-chain management fiasco.

“Fraud, false promises, concealment”. Iwatani files lawsuit against Nel over faulty hydrogen refueling stations.

Who could have seen it coming? Who?

2 thoughts on “Shell Permanently Shuts Down its California Hydrogen Stations”

  1. @anon, your comment truly highlights a remarkable level of… shall we say unfounded optimism? But fear not because a simple explanation of how planes actually fly is very simple.

    Planes, like birds including penguins, rely on basic aerodynamic principles and propulsion for flight. Wings create lift by exploiting pressure differences as gas or liquid flows over and under them, countering gravity. Thrust, generated by jet or prop engines, overcomes drag to propel the aircraft forward. Pilots control direction by modifying the plane’s surfaces.

    Looking closer at thrust, jet engines typically burn Jet A or Jet A-1 fuel, similar to kerosene. Propeller engines may use the same fuel or high-octane Avgas. And that means… wait for it… hydrogen combustion is NOT AT ALL how planes fly.

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