Monday, March 1, 2021

Senate Committee Meets March 10 On Carbon Dioxide Management Technologies

Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committee is scheduled to hold an informational meeting March 10 on the deployment and utilization of carbon dioxide management technologies.

The presenters include--

-- Dr. Brian Anderson, Director, National Energy Technology Laboratory [Previous testimony on carbon capture]  [NewsClip]

-- Dr. Gale C. Blackmer, Director, DCNR Bureau of Topographic and Geologic Survey

-- Kristin Carter, PG, CPG, Assistant State Geologist, DCNR Bureau of Topographic and Geologic Survey

-- Representatives from CONSOL Energy, Inc.


Act 129 of 2008 directed the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources to study the issue of carbon capture and underground storage of carbon dioxide.

A series of reports were produced on geological carbon sequestration opportunities in Pennsylvania, assessment of risk, legal issues and insurance and viability of a large-scale carbon capture and sequestration network in the state.

The reports found there would need to be several significant changes in law to make large-scale carbon capture and sequestration feasible in the Commonwealth.

Click Here for more on how DCNR is addressing Climate Change on Public Lands.

In February, 2020, Sen. Sharif Street (D-Philadelphia) announced he would be introducing legislation to create a new Clean Energy Standard with carbon capture as an important part of a new Alternative Energy Portfolio Standard. The bill was not introduced last year. Read more here.

In July, 2020, the General Assembly passed and Gov. Wolf signed into law House Bill 732 (Kaufer-R-Luzerne) a $660 million tax credit program to encourage the use of natural gas in manufacturing processes.  The bill stipulates companies receiving the tax credit utilize carbon capture and sequestration technology “to the extent it is cost effective and feasible.”  Read more here.

In the last few years the PA Environmental Council has convened stakeholders and initiated conversations surrounding carbon capture, utilization and storage in Pennsylvania.

PEC worked with the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES) to organize a panel discussion on carbon capture.

Last September, PEC released an online storymap on carbon capture, utilization and storage in Pennsylvania as a primer on the issue.  Read more here.

Also in September, Berks County-based Rodale Institute released a study showing a shift to regenerative agriculture could sequester 100 percent of annual global carbon emissions.  Read more here.

On October 1 of 2020, Gov. Tom Wolf announced his administration is joining with six other states – Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Montana, Oklahoma and Wyoming – in signing a memorandum of understanding (MOU) expressing a commitment to establish and implement a regional CO2 transport infrastructure plan by collaborating and leveraging resources across the participating states.  Read more here.

According to the MOU, the signatory states recognize that development of regional and national CO2 transport networks, together with proposed tax credits and other financial incentives for carbon capture from industrial facilities and power plants and from ambient air through direct air capture, can support long-term production and use of America’s abundant and affordable natural resources, and create and preserve high-paying jobs in energy-producing, agricultural, and industrial states of the country, all while significantly reducing net carbon emissions.

DCNR is helping to work on this and related projects.

In November, the PA Forestry Association announced the American Forest Foundation in partnership with The Nature Conservancy  has launched a pilot carbon sequestration incentive program in selected areas of Pennsylvania called the Family Forest Carbon Program.

The Family Forest Carbon Program is designed to be easily accessible to small landowners, removing the barriers landowners often face—access, lack of expertise and cost—to help them manage and optimize their family forests for carbon sequestration.

In November, Consol Energy received U.S. Department of Energy funding to support the construction of a 300 megawatt coal-fired power plant in Greene County that would use carbon dioxide capture technology.  Read more here.

The meeting will start at 10:00 a.m. and will be available online.

Sen. Gene Yaw (R-Lycoming) serves as Majority Chair of the Senate Environmental Committee and can be contacted by calling 717-787-3280 or sending email to:   Sen. Carolyn Comitta (D-Chester) serves as Minority Chair and can be contacted by calling 717-787-5709 or sending email to:

[Posted: March 1, 2021]  PA Environment Digest

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