The European Marine Centre has produced hydrogen gas from electricity generated from tides off the coast of Orkney, Scotland. This is the first time hydrogen has been created by tidal energy. They hydrogen will be converted back to electricity by a fuel cell at a pier in Kirkwall where it will be used as auxiliary power for ferries when tied up at the dock overnight.  Eventually this electricity will power the ferries themselves.

Through a grant from the California Energy Commission, Shell Oil Company will construct 7 new hydrogen refueling stations in the northern part of the US state, including 3 in San Francisco. Automakers Honda and Toyota will also be participating in the project.

The Germany Ministry of Transport has given 4 million euros to Fastned to build 25 fast charging stations for electric vehicles across the country. Each station will have multiple chargers which can add 250 km (155 miles) of range in 20 minutes.

General Motors announced that by 2025 all of its models in China will have an electric version. To achieve this objective, the company is opening a new electric battery plant in Shanghai this year. GM CEO Mary Barra said the future of mobility will be based on electrification, autonomous vehicles, connectivity and car sharing services.

A European research consortium manage by Volkswagen has commenced a 4 year project to test the viability of autonomous driving. The pilot project will focus on Level 3 and Level 4 functions as set out in the SAE guidelines. Thirteen European automobile manufacturers, suppliers, research institutes and universities, and small and mid-sized companies will operate 100 vehicles with 1,000 drivers under real conditions and in a wide range of applications. This is the largest EU-sponsored project of its kind.

A company in the Canadian city of Edmonton, Alberta has started commercial production of cellulosic ethanol. Enerkem is operating the first commercial plant in the world to make cellulosic ethanol from non-recyclable, non-compostable, mixed municiple solid waste. Enerkem’s technology transforms non-recyclable waste into into a pure synthetic gas (syngas) which is then converted into biofuels for vehicles.


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