Representative Scott Peters (D-CA) has asked EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy to clarify the use of carbon capture and utilization (CCU) technologies in emissions reduction plans by states working to comply with the agency’s Clean Power Plan rules.
A number of companies in California and around the nation are developing new technologies that use carbon dioxide as a feedstock for making valuable products. However, the EPA’s proposed rules do not specifically endorse the approach as a means to achieve emissions reductions under the law. Rep. Peters specifically mentions the algae industry in his letter:
Algae CCU is adequately demonstrated and technically feasible. It can be implemented at a reasonable cost, provide meaningful emission reductions, and its inclusion in state plans will serve to promote further development and deployment of the technology. By creating a market for captured carbon, carbon utilization can mitigate, offset, or even negate the cost of carbon capture, providing a CO2 reduction mechanism that minimizes the cost to ratepayers.
Rep. Peters also notes that clarifying CCU’s role in emission reduction plans would stimulate further investment and innovation:
I ask you clarify for my office–and to states and CCU technology developers–as soon as possible if the EPA will support inclusion of carbon utilization in state emissions reduction plans. Such affirmative recognition would provide states and sources of private capital with the confidence to invest in this promising CO2 solution while helping to create a market for CO2 that reduces the cost of compliance.
Rep. Peters joins a growing list of legislators that have endorsed the use of technologies that can recycle carbon dioxide into useful products, simultaneously reducing emissions and minimizing costs to power producers. Most recently, Senators Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) visited algae producer BioProcess Algae to review the company’s approach that capture CO2 to produce algae-derived animal feeds.