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Arnold Schwarzenegger Lights Fuel Cell Christmas Tree

Ah, yes, it’s beginning to look a lot like X-prize. Well, not really, just one small step towards it as hydrogen technology meets the Christmas holiday season.

Last night in Sacramento, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger lighted a Christmas tree powered by hydrogen fuel cell to kick off the holiday season. Governor Schwarzenegger along with First Lady Maria Shriver opened the Lighting Ceremony on the west steps of the State Capitol building, showing their support for energy efficiency and hydrogen technology.

Television host Pat O’Brien was the Master of Ceremonies for the event and Grammy-winning vocalist Anita Baker gave a special performance. Altergy Systems of Folsom along with the California Stationary Fuel Cell Collaborative provided the 1 kw fuel cell to power the lights on the tree.

Besides the zero emissions fuel cell, the 55-foot white fir tree, which was donated by the U.S. Forest Service, is strung with energy efficient LED bulbs. The Christmas tree is off the grid so in case of a blackout it will still shine brightly throughout the holiday season.

One can even picture it now that in the storybooks of the future, Santa’s sleigh and even Rudolph’s bright red nose will be powered by onboard hydrogen fuel cell. It could happen.

About Hydro Kevin Kantola

Hydro Kevin Kantola
I'm a hydrogen auto blogger, editor and publisher interested in documenting the history and the progression of hydrogen autos, vehicles and infrastructure worldwide.

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One comment

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    It would be SOOO cool if this technology could be used to power electric lighting, both normal electrical needs and holiday lighting.

    As I drive through my neighborhood, while I LOVE looking at the beautiful displays, I can’t help but think about the wasted resources, pollution, etc. that those displays consume. (And SOME of the people in my neighborhood are like the guys in “Deck the Halls,” totally excessive, consume the same power as small emerging nations, so we could really use a clean renewable source of energy.) It would be so great to be able to feel OK about using energy again.

    I recently started doing some work for Ecotality ( They’ve partnered with JPL to create a hydrogen-on-demand system they call the hydratus. If it can be made into a full production system, it could be used for all kinds of power generation. Then we wouldn’t have to feel guilty about holiday festivities, or about going through our everyday lives.

    Lisa Hart

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