HELENA —The Montana Chamber of Commerce presented a report on Thursday before the meeting of the Montana Environmental Quality Council (EQC) on the potential benefits of additional research and development into Carbon Capture, Utilization & Sequestration, or CCUS. CCUS is a technology-based solution to decreasing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
“Montana is resource rich with a plentiful amount coal, but that only goes so far without cost effective methods to develop it,” said Todd O’Hair of Cloud Peak Energy. ” While we have an abundance of research on CCUS, moving forward we need to put that research into action to see how this technology can be improved and modified to become more cost effective. Pilot projects would help shed light on what we need to do to take this technology to the next level so it can be implemented on a larger scale.”
CCUS is considered a critical aspect of lowest-cost mitigation. While at present the initial costs of this technology are high, it has the potential to be an effective and less disruptive technology to mitigate GHG emissions.
“As part of Envision 2026, our 10-year strategic plan, we took a hard look at CCUS,” said Webb Scott Brown, president/CEO of the Montana Chamber of Commerce. “CCUS has the potential to be a great solution to decrease emissions while still allowing us to develop our abundance of coal. That achieves our goals of increasing jobs, per capita income, and gross domestic product – all while preserving our beautiful environment. We can meet increasing national and global energy demand and continue to provide funding for schools, emergency services, local governments and infrastructure improvements.”
Without investment in CCUS, the International Energy Agency cautioned there may not be another long-term, effective plan for carbon emission mitigation.
“CCUS could be an ideal opportunity for Montana to be at the leading edge of implementing a technology that would significantly reduce global energy poverty,” continued Brown. “The federal government should strongly consider investment in pilot projects to build upon the CCUS research and development that is currently taking place.”
Implications of the Increasing Demand for Energy
World energy consumption is projected to increase by 41 percent by 2050 as the world’s population increases by more than 1 billion, and hundreds of millions more are lifted out of energy poverty.
Renewables are an important part of addressing the dual challenges of climate change and energy poverty. However, renewables are projected to meet only 18 percent of world energy needs by 2050.
Coal will remain an important part of the world’s energy mix far into the future. Demand for coal will increase through 2050. A significant effort, then, needs to be made to reduce and eliminate carbon emissions related to burning coal.
CCUS has been identified as one of the most promising and cost-effective technologies to mitigate carbon emissions. At the same time, CCUS will help the developing world continue to utilize cheap and plentiful coal.
You can read the full report here.
ABOUT THE MONTANA CHAMBER
Since it’s formation in 1931, the Montana Chamber of Commerce has been the state’s leading business advocate, representing members from the state’s largest businesses, to Main Street “mom-and-pop’s.”
As the leading business advocate, the Montana Chamber of Commerce envisions a business climate that is optimal for Montana business prosperity.
To create and sustain an optimal business climate, business prosperity, and a strong Montana economy, the Montana Chamber of Commerce, through advocacy, education, and collaboration works to provide an empowered and educated workforce, reduce business growth obstacles, and advance positions that promote success for Montana businesses.
For Immediate Release
July 27, 2018
Media Contact: Communications Director Alexandria Klapmeier
(C) 406-442-2405 EXT. 104 or Alexandria@MontanaChamber.com
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