Keen to establish Aiken County at the forefront of hydrogen fuel technology, the county’s Council is believed to be ready to accept significant funding for a future hydrogen fuelling station.

Hydrogen could become the automotive fuel of the future, and Aiken County in the US is poised to be at the forefront of that new wave, according to www.fuelcellworks.com.

Aiken County Council recently voted unanimously to accept a $600,000 loan from the South Carolina Energy Office, for the establishment of a hydrogen fueling station at Sage Mill Park.

It reportedly did so with the strong support of the Aiken Edgefield Economic Development Partnership, which plans to be an active participant in the project, said Director Fred Humes.

Using hydrogen to power the nation's cars could mean far less dependence on disappearing fossil fuels in the US, no more noxious fumes, and no more polluting CO2 emissions.

It is also seen as a ‘visionary approach’ for the county and encourages the adoption of a future hydrogen infrastructure, a venture that has already seen vehicle development take place in South Carolina.

Earlier this year, the Centre for Hydrogen Research and URS Washington Division rolled-out South Carolina’s first hydrogen-fuelled vehicle - the eTec Hydrogen Internal Combustion Engine vehicle, a 2007 Chevrolet Silverado 1500.

“The availability of such a fixed fuelling station at Sage Mill Park, adjacent to various industrial facilities and near Interstate 20, would enhance the (efforts to support the development of hydrogen fuel as fuel in motor vehicles and industrial vehicles) and also serve as an educational and information site for such technology,” the County Council’s ordinance reads.

Humes indicated Columbia officials also are venturing into hydrogen fuel and that in the ‘not too distant future’, Columbia, Aiken and Atlanta could become known as a hydrogen corridor.