UToledo Remains Committed to Leadership Role in Decarbonized Future

October 13, 2023 | News, Research, UToday, Alumni
By Tyrel Linkhorn

Great Lakes Clean Hydrogen, a broad consortium that included The University of Toledo as lead academic partner, was not among the projects selected by the U.S. Department of Energy for a federal hydrogen hub, but UToledo officials remain optimistic about the University’s future role as a leader in the country’s transition away from fossil fuels.

“We, along with our industry, academic non-profit and federal research partners, put together a strong, competitive proposal,” said Dr. Frank Calzonetti, vice president for innovation and economic development. “While it’s disappointing to not be selected in this first wave of federal investment in new clean energy development, we look forward to pursuing other funding opportunities with our partners to create and support industries in our region to decarbonize and transition to a zero-emission future.”

More than 70 applicants, including Great Lakes Clean Hydrogen, sent letters of interest last year to the Department of Energy for the $8 billion federal regional clean hydrogen hub initiative.

The Toledo project was among 33 that were selected to submit a full proposal, and UToledo representatives joined other consortium partners to make their pitch in Washington this summer as one of about a dozen finalists.

The Department of Energy announced the seven projects it would fund on Friday in regions across the country, including several spanning midwestern states.

UToledo has for years been a leader in solar technology development and UToledo researchers are currently engaged in DOE-funded research into harnessing the power of the sun to create clean hydrogen from water.

The University also has in recent years forged strong ties with the Department of Energy’s national laboratories, hosting the directors of 10 national labs on campus in 2019 and collaborating with seven national labs on research projects to develop breakthrough solutions to global challenges, particularly solar energy, grid security, water quality human health and manufacturing.

“The Midwest — and The University of Toledo in particular — is well-positioned for a leadership role in the massive transition away from carbon fuels that our country needs to make,” Calzonetti said. “We have made strong connections in this area, and we’re confident in our ability to continue contributing research and support toward that goal.”

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