Search

 

Cablegate: Iceland has Largest Hydrogen Vehicle Fleet in Europe

VZCZCXRO3206
PP RUEHIK
DE RUEHRK #0019 0321601
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 011601Z FEB 10
FM AMEMBASSY REYKJAVIK
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4276
INFO RUCPDOC/USDOC WASHDC
RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE

UNCLAS REYKJAVIK 000019

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ECON ETRD EFIN CVIS SENV IC
SUBJECT: ICELAND HAS LARGEST HYDROGEN VEHICLE FLEET IN EUROPE

1. (U) Minister of Industry Katrin Juliusdottir handed out keys to
ten Ford Focus Fuel Cell Vehicles (FCVs) to customers at a January
25 ceremony in Reykjavik hosted by Icelandic New Energy and
Brimborg, a local Ford retailer. In her remarks, the Minister
commented on the progress in Iceland towards using environmentally
friendly vehicles. She expressed hope that use of such vehicles in
the public sector and in some of Iceland's municipalities would set
a positive example. She noted that she had already test driven both
gas electric hybrid and methane powered vehicles. As the Minister
and CDA Sam Watson then test drove one of the vehicles, she
commented that the car's quiet whir reminded her of a space ship.


2. (U) The ceremony marked another step towards the government's
goal of increased use of renewable energy vehicles. Iceland's near
complete reliance on geothermal and hydro power as well as
geothermal heating means that land transportation is the last area
in which to reduce carbon emissions. In 1998, the GOI set a policy
to increase the use of domestic renewable (geothermal) energy in
transportation by using local electricity to substitute for
hydrocarbon based imported fuel. Since 1999, Icelandic New Energy
has been working to facilitate the integration of hydrogen as a fuel
into Icelandic society. In addition, the Minister sees this as a
possible way to develop new sectors.

3. (U) According to dealership officials, Ford views Iceland as a
suitable and convenient location to conduct field research in this
new technology. Ford's recognition of Iceland's experience,
research and skills in handling hydrogen is the key reason for
testing its products and seeking customer feedback. These
additional ten cars will make the total hydrogen vehicle fleet the
largest one in Europe with 22 hydrogen vehicles operating in
Reykjavik.

4. (U) In his remarks, the Iceland New Energy official offered to
lease a hydrogen vehicle to the Embassy. Charge agreed to
investigate the possibility. (Comment: We would be happy to add a
hydrogen vehicle to our fleet, but our understanding is that it
would need to be four wheel drive in Iceland. Having one non-four
wheel drive vehicle for use in Reykjavik only strikes us an
excellent way to encourage both renewable energy vehicles and U.S.
manufacturers. We will look into this possibility through
appropriate channels. End Comment).

WATSON

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 


Binoy Kampmark: Europe Dries Up
Scenes and pictures have been circulating of broken earth, lacking moisture, cracked and yearning. But these are not from traditional drought-stricken parts of the planet, where the animal carcass assumes near totemic power... More>>



UN: Bachelet Alarmed By Number Of Palestinian Children Killed In Latest Escalation

UN Human Rights Chief Michelle Bachelet today expressed alarm at the high number of Palestinians, including children, killed and injured in the occupied Palestinian territory this year, including in intense hostilities between Israel and Palestinian armed groups in Gaza last weekend... More>>

Save The Children: One Year Under Taliban Rule, Girls Are More Isolated, Hungry, Sad: New Report
One year since the Taliban took control of Afghanistan, an economic crisis, crippling drought and new restrictions have shattered girls’ lives, excluding them from society and leaving them hungry...
More>>

Somalia: ‘We Cannot Wait For Famine To Be Declared; We Must Act Now’
Rising acute food insecurity in Somalia has caused more than 900,000 people to flee their homes in search of humanitarian assistance since January last year, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has warned... More>>

UN: American West Faces Water And Power Shortages Due To Climate Crisis
Two of the largest reservoirs in the United States are at dangerously low levels due to the climate crisis and overconsumption of water, which could affect water and electricity supply for millions in six western states and Mexico, the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) warned on Tuesday... More>>



Singapore: UN Experts Call For Immediate Moratorium On Executions For Drug Offences

UN experts* today condemned the execution of Nazeri Bin Lajim, a 64-year-old Malay Singaporean national convicted of drug offenses and urged the Government of Singapore to halt plans to execute individuals on death row for drug related charges... More>>