In recent years alternative automobile power technologies have received increased attention from OEM's, special interest groups, and the public. Plausible power technologies now include internal combustion engines, batteries, fuel cells, and a variety of hybrid technologies. The merits of each of these technologies as a means to move personal and fleet transportation into the next century have been highly debated. One technology that has emerged as a viable alternative to the internal combustion engine is the fuel cell.Considering arguments on all sides of the debate, the authors describe the results of a systematic, focused examination of the sustainability of fuel cells for transportation and discuss strategies for sustainable technology design. Sustainable technologies are those that contribute to preserving or improving societal quality, the environment, and the economy for future generations. Successful development of sustainable technologies requires the effective integration of sustainability concepts into the technology development process.