This is the third part of my three-part Q&A with Al Ebron, executive director of the National Alternative Fuels Training Consortium (NAFTC). Here Ebron talks about the future of alternative fuels, alternative fuel vehicles, and the future of NAFTC.
Robert Gluck: What do you see as the future for alternative fuels? AFVs?
Al Ebron: The future of alternative fuels is bright. The petroleum available on Earth will not last forever. Alternative fuels must be a part of the future of transportation. We must continue to find ways to make alternative fuels available to the masses. Infrastructure must support AFVs if the industry is going to continue to thrive.
One of the goals of the Advanced Electric Drive Vehicle Education Program is to train infrastructure engineers on how to service electric drive vehicle charging stations. Developing the infrastructure and making it viable are keys to the success of alternative fuel and advanced technology vehicles.
Advanced electric drive vehicles are here, and they are here to stay. These vehicles are becoming mainstream vehicles, and along with alternative fuel vehicles, consumers have more choices than ever for the personal transportation needs.
RG: What do you see in the future for NAFTC?
AE: The NAFTC will continue to provide high quality education and outreach programs that promote the use of alternative fuel and advanced technology vehicles. We are especially excited about the opportunities our U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) projects have provided us.
Our newest curricula will target first responders, secondary school educators and students, infrastructure engineers and automotive technicians. This is an exciting time for the NAFTC, and we look forward to a future of energy independence and cleaner air.
RG: Is there anything else you would like to highlight?
AE: In addition to the two large DOE grants, the NAFTC is currently working on two hydrogen projects in West Virginia. First, the Hydrogen Vehicle Test Project at Yeager Airport in Charleston, in conjunction with the Central West Virginia Regional Airport Authority and the U.S. DOE National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL), will evaluate the use of hydrogen vehicles throughout the state of West Virginia and allow those vehicles to fuel at the Yeager Airport hydrogen station.
Second, the Hydrogen Fuel Dispensing Station at West Virginia University, funded by a grant from the U.S. DOE National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL), will create a hydrogen corridor by establishing a second, northern hydrogen terminus along I-79 that will support the evaluation of components, devices, subsystems, and systems for hydrogen energy.
You can find the first two segments of the interview here:
- Part I of Q & A With NAFTC Executive Director Al Ebron--Pioneering Energy Independence
- Part II of Interview with NAFTC's Al Ebron: Transportation Sector is a Giant Emitter of Greenhouse Gases
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