Hydrogen Olympics

In the past decade, Japan has been gradually emerging as one of the world’s leaders in hydrogen and fuel cell technology. Given the country’s lack of domestic energy resources, hydrogen is seen by many Japanese leaders in government and private sector as a means to transition the economy to utilizing this clean, efficient, and reliable technology to address climate change, provide for energy security, and power homes, businesses, and transportation.

The most iconic symbol of the Olympics is the torch and flame. To highlight the importance of hydrogen at the games, the Tokyo Olympic Committee revealed that it will be using hydrogen as fuel for the Olympic flame.

Picture: efe.com

So, when the final torch bearer lights the Olympic cauldron on July 23 in the Japan National Stadium, it will mark not only the start of the Games, but a new chapter in the country’s drive towards a sustainable future.

This is the first time in the history of the Olympic Games when hydrogen is fuelling both the Olympic and Paralympic Cauldrons in Tokyo. Electricity used to create the hydrogen comes from a solar array located in the Fukushima prefecture.

Another aspect is the Olympic Village that is located in the city of Tokyo and act as a miniature hydrogen society. The village uses hydrogen to provide heat, hot water and light in dormitories, cafeterias and training facilities for 11,000 athletes.

Picture: efe.com

However after the Games, this Olympic Village will be turned into hydrogen powered flats, a school, shops and other facilities. It’s been designed to demonstrate an urban lifestyle that is environmentally friendly, socially inclusive and technologically advanced.

Marie Sallois, Director for Sustainability at the International Olympic Committee says that „the Olympic Games are a great opportunity to demonstrate technologies which can help tackle today’s challenges, such as climate change, Tokyo 2020’s showcasing of hydrogen is just one example of how these Games will contribute to this goal.

References:

  • Fuel cell and hydrogen energy association 2020.05.25.
  • Newscientis.com/ technology 2020.05.26

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