WASHINGTON, DC – This week, Reps. Dave Joyce (OH-14) and Troy Carter (LA-02) introduced H.R. 9230, the SECURE Act, legislation that aims to support state-led efforts to mitigate climate change by expanding carbon capture and storage. Also known as geologic sequestration, this process includes capturing carbon dioxide (CO2) at emissions sources or directly or indirectly from the atmosphere, then transporting it and storing it safely in deep, underground locations known as Class VI wells. Class VI wells have been recognized as a way to curb climate change by sequestering greenhouse gas emissions from industrial sites.
“This bipartisan bill is proof that we can reduce emissions and ensure Americans are good stewards of the environment without sacrificing jobs, hurting our economy, or destroying our energy independence,” said Congressman Dave Joyce. I’m proud to introduce this legislation and will always fight for policies that allow the United States to provide cleaner, cheaper, and more reliable energy here at home and abroad.”
“Carbon capture and storage is a critical tool in our global fight against climate change, and America should be a leader in this industry,” said Congressman Troy Carter. “I am proud to work on a bipartisan basis to support state-led efforts in Louisiana and around the country to sequester greenhouse gases through carbon capture and storage while creating good-paying jobs right in our communities.”
“We’ve seen firsthand how states like North Dakota and Wyoming have benefited from having the Class VI permitting process in their own hands,” said Rich Powell, CEO, ClearPath Action. “As the U.S sees a rapid growth of carbon capture and other important technologies, this common-sense policy from Reps. Joyce and Carter will lead to more jobs and more emissions reductions. Their bill will help more states apply and ensure the review process is completed in a timely manner.”
Specifically, the SECURE Act increases the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) authorized grant funding from $50 million to $100 million to help states pay for expenses related to the establishment and operation of underground injection control programs. Thus far, EPA has delegated Class VI implementation to North Dakota and Wyoming. Despite limited track records, these states have shown that they can permit Class VI wells in a timely manner. For example, North Dakota permitted a Class VI well for storage of CO2 from an ethanol facility in less than 5 months. In the past, the EPA has taken approximately six years to permit similar wells, meaning states with primacy are more attractive for investment.
Louisiana has applied for primacy, and its application is currently under review and Railroad Commission of Texas recently approved publishing proposed amendments to its carbon dioxide rules for public comment which have since been sent to EPA as part of a pre-application that kicks off the review process.
Since 1990, the U.S. has reduced its carbon emissions more than the next 12 emissions-reducing countries combined. More recently, over the last 10 years, the U.S. achieved the largest reduction of emissions in the history of conventional energy.