On July 25, 2013, Judi Greenwald, Vice President for Technology and Innovation for the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions, testified on the benefits of CO2-EOR before the Subcommittee on Energy of the U.S. House of Representatives’ Committee on Science, Space, and Technology.

Ms. Greenwald testified during the Subcommittee on Energy’s hearing entitled The Future of Coal: Utilizing America’s Abundant Energy Resources.  Her testimony focused on how CO2-EOR offers the opportunity to transform CO2 from power plants and industrial facilities into a marketable commodity and create a domestic energy, economic, and environmental solution. Ms. Greenwald also explained how NEORI’s consensus recommendations seek to promote the long-term development of the CO2-EOR industry in the United States.

Others testifying at the hearing included:

  • Mr. Chris Smith, Acting Assistant Secretary for Fossil Energy, Department of Energy
  • Mr. Ben Yamagata, Executive Director, Coal Utilization Research Council
  • Mr. Don Collins, Chief Executive Officer, Western Research Institute

Click here to read the full testimony.

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In announcing his climate action plan, President Obama highlighted a vital technology for reducing emissions: carbon capture and storage. I recently had the opportunity to tour a first-of-its-kind CCS operation at an Air Products plant in Port Arthur, Texas.

Air Products has integrated state-of-the-art CO2 capture technology into an existing hydrogen plant. Despite being the most abundant element in the universe, hydrogen must be separated from other compounds, and CO2 is a byproduct of the separation process. On our tour of the Port Arthur project, we viewed the capture equipment that separates CO2 from a gas stream before compressing it for transportation via pipeline. Each year, about one million tons of CO2 will be captured and transported for underground storage, rather than being released into the atmosphere.

The project is a milestone for several reasons.

First, it’s the world’s first commercial-scale CCS project involving hydrogen production. CCS is often thought of as an option only for reducing power plant emissions, but CO2 can be captured from many types of large industrial facilities as well.

Second, the Port Arthur project is an example of successful public-private collaboration to advance clean energy, with funding from the Department of Energy and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 covering up to $284 million of the project’s $430 million cost.

And third, the captured CO2 will be used in enhanced oil recovery (EOR), a longtime practice of injecting carbon dioxide into declining oil wells to increase production. The COwill be transported by pipeline and injected into East Texas oil wells to produce an estimated 1.6 million to 3.1 million barrels of domestic oil a year.

Selling captured CO2 for use in EOR provides a vital revenue stream for a capture project, helping offset high investment costs. In fact, most existing or planned CO2 capture projects in the world today are taking advantage of CO2-EOR. In the process, they are helping to advance the technology and demonstrate its broader potential in curbing carbon emissions,

As Judi Greenwald of C2ES explained in recent House testimony, CCS can capture up to 90 percent of emissions from stationary sources, such as power plants and industrial facilities, while allowing coal and natural gas to remain part of our energy mix. The International Energy Agency estimates that CCS could account for one-sixth of the global emission reductions needed by 2050.

Although approximately 60 commercial-scale CCS projects are now in development around the world, we are not nearly on track to achieving the potential forecast by IEA. Adopting CCS remains relatively expensive. To bring costs down, we need to learn from the deployment of numerous commercial-scale projects and do more research and development for CCS component technologies.

In the United States, future federal support for CCS is uncertain. DOE has yet to award funding to support the development of more commercial-scale CCS projects, though DOE recently announced its intention to provide up to $8 billion in new loan guarantees to CCS and other clean energy projects. The National Enhanced Oil Recovery Initiative (NEORI) is calling for Congress to adopt legislation to expand and modify the existing Section 45Q Tax Credit for Carbon Sequestration.

Overall, we need to see more CCS projects like the Air Products project and CCS deployment in other industries. The United States and countries around the world need to act faster on CCS by offering incentives for commercial-scale projects and putting more effort into CCS research and development.

By Patrick Falwell, Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES)

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NEORI discusses its recommendations with the Global CCS Institute

June 29, 2013

On June 26, the Global CCS Institute hosted a webinar exploring proposed incentives to support CO2 capture for use in enhanced oil recovery during budget constrained times. Patrick Falwell, Solutions Fellow with the Center for Climate Energy Solutions, discussed the details of NEORI’s proposals for enabling the expansion of CO2-EOR in the United States, while […]

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Press Release: NEORI Welcomes Bipartisan Legislation to Encourage American Oil Production Using Carbon Dioxide

September 20, 2012

Press Release September 20, 2012 Contact:  Laura Rehrmann, C2ES, 703-516-0621, rehrmannl@c2es.org Brad Crabtree, GPI, 701-647-2041, bcrabtree@gpisd.net NEORI Welcomes Bipartisan Legislation to Encourage American Oil Production Using Carbon Dioxide The National Enhanced Oil Recovery Initiative (NEORI) welcomed today’s introduction of a bill to stimulate the expansion of enhanced oil recovery using carbon dioxide (CO2-EOR). CO2-EOR takes CO2 captured […]

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NEORI joins Senator Conrad to discuss CO2-EOR, a win-win-win opportunity for energy, the economy, and the environment

August 23, 2012

Senator Kent Conrad (D-ND) was joined by Brad Crabtree, Policy Director of the Great Plains Institute, and NEORI participants representing Basin Electric Power Cooperative and C12, to discuss the exciting opportunity that CO2-EOR represents at an event in North Dakota. Earlier this year, Senator Conrad and other members of Congress welcomed recommendations from NEORI to […]

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CO2-Enhanced Oil Recovery: Show Me the Money

August 16, 2012

Brad Crabtree, Policy Director of the Great Plains Institute, a co-convenor of the National Enhanced Oil Recovery Initiative (NEORI) with the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions, is a panelist today at the Coal-Gen 2012 Conference in Louisville, KY. Crabtree will discuss NEORI and CO2-EOR as part of a panel discussion titled, “CO2-Enhanced Oil Recovery: […]

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CCS to CCUS: NEORI at the Wyoming EOR Institute’s CO2 Conference

July 24, 2012

Richard Garrett, Energy and Legislative Advocate for the Wyoming Outdoor Council and NEORI participant, discussed the Council’s perspective on CO2-EOR and NEORI as part of a panel at the University of Wyoming Enhanced Oil Recovery Institute’s 6th Annual CO2 Conference. Below are two excerpts of Mr. Garrett’s remarks.  Click here for the entirety of the remarks. […]

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Global CCS Institute Community blog features NEORI

July 6, 2012

A Global CCS Institute Community blog post features an in-depth conversation with Eileen Claussen and Judi Greenwald of C2ES (read parts one and two) on the promise of carbon capture, utilization, and storage and CO2-EOR.  Below is an excerpt: “This [NEORI's] approach shifts the CCS problem from a largely public cost, into one where the private sector has […]

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PUTTING THE “U” IN CCUS

May 3, 2012

Blog Post: Submitted by Judi Greenwald | 05/03/2012 I spent the last few days at the eleventh annual Carbon Capture Utilization & Sequestration Conference (CCUS) in Pittsburgh. For its first 10 years, it was the CCS conference, focused primarily on advancing efforts to capture and permanently sequester carbon emissions underground. This nascent technology is absolutely critical if we are going […]

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Annual CCUS Conference features panel discussion on NEORI recommendations: A Path Forward for CCUS

May 1, 2012

The eleventh annual CCUS Conference in Pittsburgh, PA features a discussion on the NEORI recommendations and how the recommendations provide a path forward for carbon capture, utilization, and storage (CCUS). Judi Greenwald, VP for Technology and Innovation at C2ES, a co-convener of NEORI with GPI, will moderate the panel discussion.  Panelists include: Greg Kunkel, Vice […]

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