Reintroduced senate bill seeks carbon emissions reduction through carbon capture and storage projects

Published on June 13, 2019 by Chris Galford

© Shutterstock

A bill recently reintroduced in the U.S. Senate by Sens. Rob Portman (R-OH) and Michael Bennet (D-CO) would allow businesses to use governmental private activity bonds (PABs) for carbon capture projects.

Accordingly, the bill is called the Carbon Capture Improvement Act. If passed, it would allow this added, tax-exempt method of financing through PABs, allowing businesses a longer time period to pay governments back. For some businesses, projects could be financed entirely — if more than 65 percent of carbon dioxide emissions are a facility are captured and successfully injected underground. Those that achieve lower percentages could be permitted on a pro-rated basis.

“This bill is a win-win for jobs and the environment, and I’m proud to continue my work on this issue with Senator Bennet,” Portman said. “Carbon capture is a common-sense solution that will allow states like Ohio to continue to utilize our natural resources while protecting our environment at the same time. This bipartisan measure is supported by business groups, energy groups, and environmental groups alike, and I urge all of my colleagues to support it.”

Such supporters have included the Carbon Capture Coalition and the Utility Workers Union of America. Further, but turning to PABs for financing carbon capture, the senators are also looking to a system that has been a proven method of funding pollution control equipment for years.

“Reducing carbon pollution while creating good-paying jobs is something that Democrats, Republicans, labor unions, industry, and environmentalists can all get behind,” Bennet said. “Our legislation would help reduce carbon pollution by making it more cost effective for power plants and industrial facilities to invest in carbon capture equipment. This is a significant step to ensure we are boosting Colorado’s clean energy economy and keeping our air clean as the threat of climate change continues to grow.”