Click here to watch Chairman Barrasso’s remarks.  

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, U.S. Senator John Barrasso (R-WY), chairman of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works (EPW), delivered the following remarks at a full committee hearing on “Expanding and Accelerating the Deployment and Use of Carbon Capture, Utilization, and Sequestration.”

The hearing featured testimony from Matthew Fry, policy advisor to the Office of Wyoming Governor Matt Mead; David Greeson, vice president of development at NRG Energy, Inc.; and Dr. S. Julio Friedmann, chief executive officer at Carbon Wrangler, LLC.

For more information on their testimonies click here.

Senator Barrasso’s remarks:

“Today, we are here to discuss promising technologies that both advance environmental aims and support continued use of our abundant energy resources. 

“Those technologies are known as Carbon Capture Utilization and Sequestration, or C-C-U-S.

“In Wyoming, we have tremendous coal, natural gas, and oil resources. 

“These resources fuel our state’s economy. 

“CCUS presents a win-win opportunity.

“Here is the concept. 

“Instead of releasing the CO2 into the atmosphere when we combust fossil fuels, CCUS allows us to turn that CO2 into a useful commodity.

“Through this technology, carbon dioxide is captured where the fuel is burned, such as at a power plant, and then transported, used, and ultimately stored.   

“One key use for this captured CO2 is Enhanced Oil Recovery, or E-O-R.

“EOR operations that use carbon dioxide, have been around for more than 40 years in the United States.

“CO2 is injected into wells that otherwise economically could not produce oil.

“By capturing the carbon dioxide, we have the opportunity to increase the supply of carbon dioxide available for EOR and produce oil that otherwise could not be harvested.

“The colored areas on this map show all of the oil basins where carbon dioxide enabled enhanced oil recovery could be further used.

“As you can see, these areas are all over the United States.

“CCUS and EOR should play an important role in a truly, ‘all of the above’ energy policy.

“With CO2-enabled oil recovery we have a win-win.

“We have the potential to make it economical to extract more than 60 billion barrels of oil in this country.

“And, in producing this oil, billions of tons of carbon dioxide could then be stored, which would lead to a significant decrease in carbon dioxide emissions to the atmosphere.

“The International Energy Agency estimates that the technology could enable the storage of 140 billion tons of carbon dioxide in oil reservoirs around the world.

“The Clean Air Task Force recently reported that using carbon dioxide captured through CCUS-‘can result in a 63% net reduction in CO2 emissions for every barrel of oil produced.’

“This is an impressive number and one that should grab all of our members’ attention.

“America is currently a leader in CCUS technology, and we want to keep it that way.

“Use of fossil fuels globally is projected to increase over time.

“The U.S. Energy Information Administration predicts global increases in coal use through 2040.

“Encouraging American innovation is the right approach to continuing American leadership in the development of technologies to lower the emissions associated with fossil fuel use.

“Through American leadership, we create opportunities to export our innovations around the world.

“My colleagues on both sides of the aisle recognize the critical role that CCUS can play in our future.

“This Congress, Senator Capito, Senator Whitehouse, and I were original cosponsors of bipartisan legislation introduced by Senator Heitkamp known as the FUTURE Act, or the Furthering Carbon Capture, Utilization, Technology, Underground Storage, and Reduced Emissions Act.

“The FUTURE Act extends and expands tax credits for facilities with CCUS technologies.

“I am proud to say that bill now has 24 bipartisan cosponsors.

“The committee has an opportunity to complement the FUTURE Act effort by reviewing statutes and regulations that impact CCUS.

“Now is the time to see what more we could do to encourage, and remove impediments to, the use and deployment of CCUS.

“We need to make sure our laws and regulations accelerate, not hinder, our environmental goals.

“I look forward to working with members of this committee in a bipartisan way to examine how we can expand and accelerate CCUS deployment and use.

“When we do that, we promote American leadership in technological innovation, increase our energy security, and improve our environment.”