Hydrogen Refueling Station in Santa Barbara Expands Range Along Coast for Fuel-Cell Vehicle Drivers

The California Energy Commission welcomed another new hydrogen refueling station to its network.

The Santa Barbara refueling station, which is now open at 150 South La Cumbre Road, gives fuel-cell electric vehicle drivers a coastal option for traveling between Northern and Southern California.

At a recent grand opening, Honda brought its new Clarity fuel-cell car. The car maker plans to begin commercial production of the vehicle this year.

The growing network of refueling stations gives Californians the support they need to consider replacing their petroleum-fueled cars with hydrogen fuel-cell electric vehicles. Fuel-cell cars, like all-electric plug-in cars, do not emit smog-forming pollution. They help California reduce its greenhouse gas emissions, which warm the earth and change its climate.

The Energy Commission has provided funding for 49 stations. It is working to ensure as many of them as possible are open by the end of 2016 with plans to fund up to 100 for the initial introduction of hydrogen fuel-cell electric vehicles in the California marketplace.

Hydrogen fuel-cell electric cars are much quieter to drive than gasoline-fueled cars. Fuel-cell cars have about the same range – 300 miles – on a full tank and they can be larger than electric vehicles that rely on heavy batteries. Filling up a fuel-cell vehicle takes about three to five minutes and is similar to traditional gas cars that receive liquid gas. California requires at least 33 percent of the hydrogen used by fuel-cell cars to be from renewable energy sources. Some stations will dispense 100 percent renewable hydrogen. Hydrogen refueling stations and vehicles are safe. They have been around for at least 20 years, supporting transit buses.

With transportation responsible for 37 percent of California’s greenhouse gases, zero-emission cars, such as hydrogen fuel-cell electric cars, can help California reach its climate change goals and reduce air pollution. That’s why the Energy Commission funds hydrogen refueling stations and electric vehicle chargers.

See the status and locations of these stations here.

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California Energy Commission

The California Energy Commission is the state's primary energy policy and planning agency created by the Legislature in 1974.
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