This is a seemingly insignificant news story, but don’t let appearances fool you: this is in fact one of the most important news items of the year, with enormous long term ramifications. You see, a tremendous amount of clean hydrogen energy is stored in the form of gas hydrates (frozen gas and water, basically) found on ocean floors across the world. Until now, nobody has known how to tap into these gas hydrates to release the hydrogen. And, of course, we don’t yet have a hydrogen economy, since most engines still run on oil in one form or another. But put the pieces together in the near future: hydrogen-powered vehicles in the form of fuel cells, plus a plentiful, clean source of hydrogen fuel from these gas hydrates found on the ocean floor. Now you’ve got a whole new world economy where Canada and even Japan are sources of fuel, and the Middle East is no longer so strategically important. The science is all here: we have the fuel cells and now a plentiful source of hydrogen that doesn’t come from barrels of oil. It’s only a matter of time before these come together in our economy.